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MARTHA’S SURPRISE: Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia on Tuesday reported that advertising revenue in publishing was up 6 percent (excluding Blueprint) in the second quarter versus last year, but guidance for the third quarter isn’t as rosy. Wenda Harris Millard, president of media and co-chief executive officer, said during the company’s quarterly earnings call that publishing revenue is expected to be down in the midteens during the third quarter, compared with the same period 12 months ago. Overall revenue for the publishing segment was down 2.5 percent in the second quarter, to $46.3 million, because of an increase at Martha Stewart Living offset by the loss of Blueprint. The division also includes its book operations. Categories that helped increase ad growth at the company during the second quarter included apparel and financial services, which is surprising, given that those are two sectors being squeezed at other titles.
Newly appointed executive chairman Charles Koppelman said the company just started rolling out magazines overseas, beginning with international editions of Martha Stewart Living and Everyday Food, but he declined to provide more details. Living had a drop in ad pages, although ad revenues were up 8 percent, and circulation was down about 10 percent. Internet revenues were $3.2 million for the quarter, compared with $2.5 million during the same period last year. Total group revenues for the quarter rose 5 percent to $77.1 million. Net income was $328,000 compared with a net loss of $6.7 million last year. — Amy Wicks