Playboy Enterprises (NYSE: PLA) reported a Q1 net loss of $3.1 million, or $0.09 per basic and diluted share, compared to net income of $5.1 million last year. Revenues were also down, dropping 8 percent to $78.5 million. The magazine publisher blamed the losses on "structural and economic pressures." Playboy's net loss for the first quarter included roughly $1.1 million in charges related to restructuring and severance expenses.
Even online revenues, typically a bright spot for most publishers, performed poorly, falling 3 percent to $15.2 million, as gains in e-commerce, advertising and mobile revenues could not offset lower pay site revenues. A one-time inventory expense related to the outsourcing of e-commerce business and the previously announced investments in upgrading Playboy.com contributed to lower online profits in the 2008 first quarter compared to last year, the company said. Overall, the company's entertainment segment, which includes online and TV, were down 37.2 percent to $2.7 million from $4.3 million in the prior year period with a 6 percent decline in revenues to $47.9 million. The Publishing Group also reported a segment loss of $3.2 million in the 2008 first quarter, versus a loss of $2.4 million in the prior year, on a 14 percent revenue decline to $20.1 million. Playboy expects Q208 ad pages to be down 5 percent compared to last year.
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By David Kaplan