USA Today parent Gannett posts narrower-than-expected loss and revenue beat as it recovers from pandemic lows

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USA Today parent Gannett Inc. posted a narrower-than-expected net loss for the third quarter and revenue that topped estimates as it enjoyed a rapid rebound from the second-quarter impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The company had a loss of $31.3 million, or 24 cents a share, in the quarter, compared with the loss of $18.5 million, or 31 cents a share, posted in the year-earlier period, and less than the 43 cents loss-per-share consensus of FactSet analysts. Revenue rose to $814.5 million from $376.6 million, ahead of the $776 million FactSet consensus. “Our third quarter results showed a significant and rapid rebound from the second quarter impact of the COVID pandemic and economic shut down,” said Chief Executive Michael Reed. The company passed 1 million digital subscriptions in the quarter, up 31% from a year ago. The company also made progress in reducing its debt, selling $100 million of non-core assets and real estate. “We’ll apply the net proceeds of these sales to reduce our total debt outstanding to $1.633 billion. We are targeting another $100 million of debt repayment by early next year and remain focused on refinancing our credit agreement during the first half of 2021, said Reed. Shares were not active premarket, but have fallen 83% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 2.5%.
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