MSLO Fiscal-Year Loss Hits $56.1 Million; Merchandising Segment Gains Ground

       

       

NEW YORK-Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia (MSLO) posted a $56.1 million net loss for its fiscal year, compared to a $15.5 million net loss for the prior year.

Declining revenues and rising expenses combined to deepen the company’s red ink for the year, which ended on Dec. 31. Overall revenues fell 10.8 percent to $197.6 million, with most of the dropoff coming from MSLO’s publishing and broadcasting segments.

The merchandising segment—which includes the Martha Stewart products offered at Macy’s, Home Depot, Staples, Michaels, PetSmart and JoAnn Fabric& Craft Stores—actually boosted its revenue by 18.4 percent for the year. It also grew its operating income by 31.7 percent.

This segment also logged a healthy fourth quarter, boosting its revenue for that period by 23.5 percent thanks to an increase in royalty revenue from Macy’s, design fees from J.C. Penney for its upcoming home line with Martha Stewart, and revenue from the home-office line with Avery. Overall, fourth-quarter revenue fell 10.8 percent to $56.4 million.

Dan Taiz, MSLO’s interim principle executive officer, said, “Merchandising delivered a strong holiday season and a good year overall, with strong revenue growth and improved profit margins.”

Net income for the quarter totaled $1.1 million, down 73.6 percent from the prior year. The 2011 fourth quarter for MSLO included a gain of $7.6 million from the sale of a cost-based investment, without which the company would have posted a loss for the quarter.

Looking ahead to this year, Taiz said, “MSLO still has much work to do in 2013, as the company positions itself to return to sustained profitability.”