Current $300 million share repurchase program expected to be completed opportunistically one year earlier than its expiration date of December 2023, driven by accelerated achievement of leverage target
Strong free cash flow from operations also continues to support commitment to strong dividend yield and ongoing investment in growth opportunities
TEGNA to participate in the 8th Annual Benchmark Consumer/Media/Entertainment Investor Conference on Thursday, September 9, 2021
Tysons, Va. – TEGNA Inc. (NYSE: TGNA) (the “Company”) today announced an updated timeline for the current $300 million share repurchase program while providing additional insight into capital allocation plans for the year ahead.
UPDATED SHARE REPURCHASE PROGRAM
TEGNA’s previously announced $300 million share repurchase program is expected to be completed by year-end 2022, one year earlier than planned. Share repurchases will be reinitiated opportunistically, subject to customary blackout periods.
TEGNA’s Board is also assessing the scope and scale of a subsequent share buyback program to be established upon completion of the existing program.
“TEGNA continues to see momentum accelerate across its business. We are executing our long-term strategy which continues to generate strong free cash flow, underpinned by high-margin, durable subscription and political revenues. Improving subscriber trends and multi-year distribution agreements also provide clear line of sight into future cash flows, which are also benefitted by the continued strong growth at our industry-leading OTT advertising platform, Premion,” said Dave Lougee, president and chief executive officer.
“Beyond this, the outlook for political revenue in 2022 also continues to strengthen, with nearly all of the most competitive U.S. Senate and gubernatorial races in TEGNA’s footprint. Combined with the U.S. House of Representatives elections in 2022, we believe broadcast political advertising will see new records compared to the prior non-presidential four-year election cycle in 2018.
“As discussed on our recent earnings calls, we have seamlessly integrated the stations we acquired in 2019 which delivered meaningful synergies well ahead of schedule. As a result, TEGNA has rapidly strengthened its balance sheet, with current year-end net leverage expected to be reduced by more than 1.5x since closing the acquisitions in third quarter 2019, meeting our 2021 guidance of low 3x range by year end. Having met this commitment, we are now turning to share repurchase as a priority near-term opportunity to enhance shareholder value.
“Due to our confidence in our 2021 performance as well as the strength of our future cash flows, in conjunction with the current attractiveness of share repurchases, TEGNA’s Board has proactively authorized use of the entire existing $300 million repurchase program by the end of 2022 while continuing to pay our very strong dividend and invest in organic and inorganic growth opportunities.
“The Board remains focused on maximizing long-term shareholder value, and will continue to proactively evaluate all options for capital deployment going forward, including potentially increasing the size of our share repurchase program.”
TEGNA Inc. (NYSE: TGNA) is an innovative media company that serves the greater good of our communities. Across platforms, TEGNA tells empowering stories, conducts impactful investigations and delivers innovative marketing solutions. With 64 television stations in 51 U.S. markets, TEGNA is the largest owner of top 4 network affiliates in the top 25 markets among independent station groups, reaching approximately 39 percent of all television households nationwide. TEGNA also owns leading multicast networks True Crime Network, Twist, and Quest. TEGNA offers innovative solutions to help businesses reach consumers across television, digital and over-the-top (OTT) platforms, including Premion, TEGNA’s OTT advertising service. For more information, visit www.TEGNA.com.
Forward Looking Statements
Certain statements in this communication may constitute “forward-looking statements” as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Any forward-looking statements contained herein are subject to a number of risks, trends and uncertainties that could cause actual results or company actions to differ materially from what is expressed or implied by these statements, including risks relating to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and its effect on our revenues, particularly our nonpolitical advertising revenues. Potential regulatory actions, changes in consumer behaviors and impacts on and modifications to TEGNA’s operations and business relating thereto and TEGNA’s ability to execute on its standalone plan can also cause actual results to differ materially. Other economic, competitive, governmental, technological and other factors and risks that may affect TEGNA’s operations or financial results are discussed in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. Any forward-looking statements in this press release should be evaluated in light of these important risk factors. TEGNA is not responsible for updating the information contained in this press release beyond the published date, or for changes made to this press release by wire services, Internet service providers or other media.
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