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After Yearlong Slide, January Sales Increase 1%

By Published on .

CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- Following a 12-month slide, radio revenue reached positive territory in January, reflecting easier year-over-year comparisons.

Combined national and local radio ad sales rose 1% vs. January 2001. Local radio revenue was up 1%, and national sales climbed 2%, according to the Radio Advertising Bureau.

In 2001 the radio

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industry experienced its first year-on-year revenue decline since 1991, beginning with a revenue drop of 3% in January and peaking at a 14% drop in September. Total revenue was down 7.4% for full-year 2001.

But the industry has remained optimistic about a rebound in 2002.

Industry leader Clear Channel Communications predicted a strong performance for its radio division in the first quarter, forecasting a 1% to 3% rise in radio cash flow in the first quarter on a pro forma basis.

RAB President-CEO Gary Fries forecasted positive radio growth for the remainder of the year, despite a slight downturn in February that reflected radio's loss of traditional TV sweeps-advertising because of the Olympics.

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