NEW YORK-Even though total revenues dropped 25.3 percent, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia posted a reduced net loss in its fiscal first quarter of $3.3 million, down from $3.6 million in last year’s first quarter.
The company managed to slash key operating-expense items in the quarter, which ended on March 31. Production, distribution and editorial expenses were down 28.4 percent, and selling and promotion expenses fell 22.1 percent. General and administrative expenses dropped 5.2 percent, and the provision for income taxes was cut by 7.4 percent.
Revenues in all three of MSLO’s segments took significant downturns in the first quarter. Revenues from merchandising, including the company’s various home-furnishings programs at retail, fell 15.6 percent. Publishing revenues, representing its largest segment, decreased 20.6 percent, and revenues from broadcasting plummeted 77 percent.
MSLO’s second quarter saw the launch of some of its J.C. Penney programs, including Martha Celebrations, a line of disposable paper products for entertaining, and MarthaWindow, MarthaLighting, MarthaRugs and MarthaMirrors in J.C. Penney stores and on jcp.com. April has seen the beginning of the second season of “Martha Stewart’s Cooking School” and the first season of “Martha Bakes,” both on PBS.