Although websites of newspapers are typically more developed than those of radio and television and have greater value, local radio and TV station sites are poised for rapid growth – and strong multiples for their website values, a new report finds.
Local websites hold significant value for their owners, especially if they’ve positioned for growth in high-demand advertising categories such as email, streaming video and paid search, according to the study, “What’s a Website Worth? Valuation Metrics for Local Websites,” issued by BIA Financial Network and Borrell Associates.
The report focuses on the growth of newspaper, television, radio station, and local “pure-play” media sites and provides a range of metrics to assist in determining their values.
The uppermost value of some of local newspaper websites was between $300-450 million, and the values for the largest-grossing radio websites were valued in the $15-20 million range.
The median value of a local website (see chart) varies by what type of company runs it, and its growth potential. Newspaper sites have higher values because of higher revenues, but TV, pure-play and radio sites gain some lift because of greater growth potential.
In 2008, the oldest newspaper, radio, TV and “city.com” websites turned 14 years old, evolving from interesting experiments to financial saviors for their parent organizations, with many sites generating millions in revenue and profits and delivering a strong potential for continued growth, according to the study.
“Obviously, there are fundamental changes taking place in the value of media properties, with the value of their websites becoming more meaningful as a percent of total value,” said Mark Fratrik, VP of BIAfn. “Given their growth potential, the value multiples of media websites may be 2-4 times that of the core business.”
According to Gordon Borrell, CEO of Borrell Associates, “Websites associated with traditional media companies benefit from promotion and content cost synergies as well as opportunities to up-sell to existing customers. As a result, their cash flow margins are robust – in most cases much higher than their parents’.”
The report also provides value magnifiers for websites, which include market penetration, sales organizations, revenue sources, media leverage, performance benchmarketing, and URL valuation.