Audacy, in an effort to meet the requirements of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), plans to execute a reverse stock split that will reduce the number of outstanding shares and increase the share price.
Shareholders voted in favor of the reverse stock split during the company’s annual meeting as part of their efforts to regain compliance with the NYSE’s minimum bid price rules.
The NYSE mandates that companies maintain a minimum average closing price of $1.00 per share over 30 consecutive trading days. Audacy’s stock price last closed above one dollar on July 5, 2022.
Audacy is currently working on determining the specifics of the reverse stock split, including the range of the split, and expects to make a formal announcement after the Memorial Day holiday weekend.
Audacy initially received a warning from the NYSE on August 1, 2022, regarding its non-compliance with the exchange’s listing standards. The company had six months to address the issue but was unable to do so by the expiration of the cure period on February 1. Since shareholder approval was required to regain compliance, the deadline was extended to the annual shareholders’ meeting.
The meeting took place via a live webcast on Wednesday, following the NYSE’s suspension of Audacy’s stock trading and initiation of delisting proceedings eight days prior. The stock was delisted after dropping 13% to nine cents, triggering the NYSE’s “abnormally low selling price” standard. Audacy’s stock is now traded over the counter as “AUDA,” and on Wednesday, shares closed down 5% at six cents.
During a reverse stock split, each outstanding share is converted into a fraction of a share. For example, in a one-for-ten reverse stock split, every ten shares are consolidated into one share. However, with Audacy’s stock currently trading at six cents per share, the multiple will be significantly higher. Detailed information regarding the reverse stock split is expected to be announced next week.
Maddy Troy serves as a writer and editor for Barrett News Media, with a specific focus on media business, advertising, and podcasting. You can find her on Twitter @Troy_Maddy.
Warner Bros. Discovery Sees 14% Drop in Ad Revenue in Q4
“This business is not without its challenges.”
Warner Bros. Discovery hosted its fourth-quarter earnings call Friday, and while the company reported hundreds of millions in losses, it was trying to view that as a positive.
The company reported a loss of $400 million, which is down sharply from the loss of $2.1 billion it experienced in the same time frame in 2022.
Additionally, Warner Bros. Discovery — the parent company of CNN — saw a 14% decline in advertising revenue during the final three months of 2023.
“This business is not without its challenges,” Chief Executive Officer David Zaslav said during the company’s fourth-quarter earnings conference call, according to CNBC. “Among them, we continue to face the impacts of ongoing disruption in the pay TV ecosystem and a dislocated, linear advertising ecosystem. We are challenging our leaders to find innovative solutions.”
The comapny did report an 86% increase in free cash flow, which now sits at $6.16 billion.
Jeremy Boreing: Every Outlet ‘Suffering From Facebook’s Massive Shift Away From News’
“Mark Zuckerberg remade the news landscape when he moved his company into the space, and then gutted it when he moved out.”
In recent years, Facebook has shifted its focus away from a news and link-sharing platform to become more focused on social interactions between users. That shift has been detrimental to news publishers, according to The Daily Wire co-founder Jeremy Boreing.
In a statement to Mediaite, the digital media executive wasn’t shy about his stance that the shift from Facebook has been detrimental not only to his organization but to the industry as a whole.
“Everyone is suffering from Facebook’s massive shift away from news. Mark Zuckerberg remade the news landscape when he moved his company into the space, and then gutted it when he moved out,” Boreing said. “A capricious trillion dollar company can crush entire industries without much effort. Daily Wire is disproportionately impacted because we were built with a focus on Facebook. Now, our focus has shifted to more premium content.”
The comments from Jeremy Boreing coincide with a report that conservative digital outlets have seen a dramatic drop in viewership, especially compared to figures seen in 2020. One outlet — Breitbart — has seen a drop in traffic of 87% compared to the tumultuous 2020 year that included the start and heights of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as a contentious presidential election between Donald Trump and Joe Biden.
Court Approves Audacy Reorganization Plan
“We have achieved a speedy confirmation of our prepackaged Plan, which will enable Audacy to pursue our strategic goals and opportunities in the dynamic audio business.”
A United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas has approved a plan for Audacy to reemerge from its bankruptcy proceedings.
Under the plan, Audacy will equitize more than $1.5 billion of funded debt, which reduces its debt load by 80%, down from $1.9 billion to $350 million.
Audacy Chairman David Field was encouraged by the development.
“Today’s announcement marks a powerful step forward for Audacy, positioning the Company for an exciting future,” said David Field, who also serves as the President and CEO of Audacy. “As expected, we have achieved a speedy confirmation of our prepackaged Plan, which will enable Audacy to pursue our strategic goals and opportunities in the dynamic audio business.
“We aim to drive accelerated growth and financial performance, capitalizing on our scaled, leadership position, our uniquely differentiated premium audio content and the robust capital structure that we will have upon emergence,” continued Field. “I also want to express my gratitude to our team, who continue their outstanding work to serve our listeners and customers with excellence and fulfill our commitments without missing a beat.”
A statement from the company claims the restructuring “will enable Audacy to continue its strategic digital transformation and capitalize on its position as a scaled, leading multi-platform audio content and entertainment company differentiated by its exclusive, premium audio content.”