Obie Media Corporation reported financial results for the third quarter of their fiscal year that ends November 30. Billboard revenue was down 6% from $1,780,273 last year to $1,674,650 in the three-month period of 2002. Management attributes lower billboard revenue over the past year to the economic recession and the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, D.C. These factors have reduced travel and tourism, which has slowed business at many hotels, motels and restaurants. The hospitality industry represents a major portion of advertising revenue for many billboard companies with highway directional signs. Obie’s billboard plant in seven states includes a large number of highway displays that carry ads for the hospitality industry.
In spite of difficult market conditions through the first half of 2002, management reports that occupancy of Obie Media’s billboards has remained relatively high, currently in the 85% area. Brian Obie, Chairman and CEO, stated that he expects occupancy to be above 90% at the end of the year. During a conference call with securities analysts on October 9, 2002, Mr. Obie reported that the company sees some recovery in the market over the past few months. He said that business was trending higher and should finish the year on a positive note.