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  • Writer's pictureRoss Levinsohn

The Arena Group Q2 Gross Profit Nearly Doubles; Revenue up 87%

The Arena Group, publisher of Sports Illustrated, TheStreet, Parade and more, reported that its second-quarter gross profit, revenue and digital-ad revenue jumped.

The Arena Group Holdings (AREN) - Get Free Report, the New York tech-driven publisher of Sports Illustrated, TheStreet, Parade and more, reported that second-quarter gross profit nearly doubled on 87% higher revenue.

Digital ad revenue more than doubled, “driven by traffic improvements of 82% and an over 40% growth in display [cost per thousand impressions],” the company said in a statement.

“The Arena Group continues to deliver robust revenue growth and improvements to the bottom line,” Chairman and Chief Executive Ross Levinsohn said in the statement. “Growth was achieved across our three core verticals – Sports, Finance and Lifestyle. We have outpaced our competitive set in both digital advertising revenue and audience growth.

“Our playbook and improved performance drove a 114% year-over-year increase in digital advertising revenue, as our properties increasingly reach coveted consumers at scale and our overall audience expanded by 82% year-over-year, according to Google Analytics.” Arena Group’s gross profit reached $18.3 million from $9.4 million, up 94%. Total Q2 revenue came in at $65.1 million against $34.7 million in the year-earlier period. Digital-ad revenue totaled $24.7 million against $11.5 million a year earlier. The company generated $5.8 million in net cash from operations, compared with net cash used of $8.4 million in the year-earlier quarter. Arena Group’s sports vertical is anchored by Sports Illustrated and features local team sites brand FanNation, The Spun and Sports Illustrated Media Group partners. The vertical more than doubled monthly average page views (up 174% from a year earlier). And sports-betting-related monthly average page views nearly doubled (up 93%), according to Google Analytics.

The finance vertical’s second-quarter monthly average page views more than doubled (up 157%) from a year earlier and grew 21% from the first quarter.

Each month, the finance vertical reached an average of nearly 30 million consumers online, according to Google Analytics. TheStreet’s second-quarter Facebook engagement tripled (up 205%) from a year earlier, according to ListenFirst.

The lifestyle vertical is anchored by Parade, which Arena Group acquired in April and migrated onto its technology infrastructure in July. The group is already improving its audience and CPMs, the company said.

And within Arena Group’s HubPages division, the PetHelpful pets brand “continues to show rapid growth," with monthly average page views increasing by a factor of seven to 42 million.

“Our highly efficient platform and proven ability to produce relevant content that engages consumers has enabled us to successfully navigate the well-publicized industry wide challenges in advertising related to a slowing economy,” Levinsohn said.

“The continued growth in partners, traffic, data and impressions allows us to provide attractive returns for advertisers.”

Arena Group’s net loss in the second-quarter widened to $22.2 million from $20.7 million in the year-earlier quarter. The losses include $14.9 million and $11.1 million, respectively, of non-cash charges. The charges relate mainly to stock-based compensation and depreciation and amortization, partly offset by deferred income taxes, the company said.

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