SUMMARY OF SIGNIFICANT ACCOUNTING POLICIES
|12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2014
|SUMMARY OF SIGNIFICANT ACCOUNTING POLICIES [Abstract]
|SUMMARY OF SIGNIFICANT ACCOUNTING POLICIES
NOTE 1. SUMMARY OF SIGNIFICANT ACCOUNTING POLICIES
Basis of Presentation
The accompanying consolidated financial statements of Salem Media Group, Inc. (Salem we, us, our or the company) include the company and its wholly owned subsidiaries. All significant intercompany balances and transactions have been eliminated.
Description of Business
Salem is a diversified multi-media company with integrated operations including radio broadcasting, digital media, and publishing. Our programming is intended for audiences interested in Christian and family-themed content and conservative news talk.
Our foundational business is the ownership and operation of radio stations in large metropolitan markets. We also own and operate Salem Radio Network® (SRN), SRN News Network (SNN), Salem Music Network (SMN), Solid Gospel Network (SGN), Salem Media Representatives (SMR) and Vista Media Representatives (VMR). SRN, SNN, SMN and SGN are networks that develop, produce and syndicate a broad range of programming specifically targeted to Christian and family-themed talk stations, music stations and general News Talk stations throughout the United States, including Salem owned and operated stations. SMR a national advertising sales firm with offices in 11 U.S. cities, specializes in placing national advertising on religious and other commercial radio stations. As of December 2014, we merged Vista Media Representatives (VMR), our national advertising sales firm established for non-Christian format stations, into SMR as our SMR and VMR sales teams consistently pursue advertising for all station formats.
Web based and digital content has been a significant growth area for Salem and continues to be a focus of future development. Salem Web Network (SWN) and our other web based businesses provide Christian and conservative-themed content, audio and video streaming, and other resources digitally through the web. SWN's web portals include Christian content websites: OnePlace.com, Christianity.com, Crosswalk.com®, GodVine.com, Jesus.org and BibleStudyTools.com. Our conservative opinion websites, collectively known as Townhall Media, include Townhall.com, HotAir.com, Twitchy.com, HumanEvents.com and RedState.com. We also issue digital newsletters, including Eagle Financial Publications, that provide market analysis and investment advice for individual subscribers from financial commentators. Church product websites including WorshipHouseMedia.com, SermonSpice.com, and ChurchStaffing.com offer downloads and service platforms to pastors and other educators. Our web content is accessible through all of our radio station websites that feature content of interest to local listeners throughout the United States.
E-commerce sites include Salem Consumer Products (SCP), an e-commerce business that sells books, DVD's and editorial content developed by our on-air personalities, Eagle Wellness, an online site offering complimentary health advice and sales of nutritional products.
Our acquisition of Regnery Publishing on January 10, 2014, represented a major shift in our publishing operating segment. Regnery Publishing is a publisher of conservative books that was founded in 1947. Regnery has published dozens of bestselling books by leading conservative authors and personalities, including Ann Coulter, Newt Gingrich, Michelle Malkin, David Limbaugh, Ed Klein, Laura Ingraham, Mark Steyn and Dinesh D'Souza.
Our publishing operating segment also includes Salem Publishing and Xulon Press. Salem Publishing produces and distributes numerous Christian and conservative opinion print magazines, including: Homecoming® The Magazine, YouthWorker Journal, Singing News®, FaithTalk Magazine, and Preaching Magazine. Through December 2014, we also printed and produced Townhall Magazine. Xulon Press is a print-on-demand self-publishing service for Christian authors.
Cash and Cash Equivalents
We consider all highly liquid debt instruments, purchased with an initial maturity of three-months or less, to be cash equivalents. The carrying value of our cash equivalents approximated fair value at each balance sheet date.
Restricted cash includes amounts that are contractually restricted in connection with a security agreement between the company and Traveler's Insurance.
Trade Accounts Receivable
Trade accounts receivable represent receivables from customers for the sale of advertising, block program time, sponsorships and events, product sales, royalties, video and graphic downloads, subscriptions, book sales and author fees. Our receivables are recorded as invoiced and represent claims that will be settled in cash. The carrying value of our receivables, net of the allowance for doubtful accounts and estimated sales returns, represents their estimated net realizable value.
Allowance for Doubtful Accounts
We evaluate the balance reserved in our allowance for doubtful accounts on a quarterly basis based on our historical collection experience, the age of the receivables, specific customer information and current economic conditions. Past due balances are generally are not written-off until all of our collection efforts have been unsuccessful, including use of a collections agency. A considerable amount of judgment is required in assessing the likelihood of ultimate realization of these receivables including the current creditworthiness of each customer. If the financial condition of our customers were to deteriorate, resulting in an impairment of their ability to make payments, additional allowances may be required.
We provide for estimated returns for products sold with the right of return, primarily book sales associated with Regnery Publishing and nutritional products sold through Eagle Wellness. We record an estimate of these product returns as a reduction of revenue in the period of the sale. Our estimates are based upon historical sales returns, the amount of current period sales, economic trends and any changes in customer demand and acceptance of our products. We regularly monitor actual performance to estimated return rates and make adjustments as necessary. Estimated return rates utilized for establishing estimated returns reserves have approximated actual returns experience. However, actual returns may differ significantly, either favorably or unfavorably, from these estimates if factors such as the historical data we used to calculate these estimates do not properly reflect future returns or as a result of changes in economic conditions of the customer and/or its market.
Revenue is recognized as it is earned in accordance with applicable guidelines. We consider amounts to be earned once evidence of an arrangement has been obtained, services are performed, fees are fixed or determinable and collectability is reasonably assured.
We account for broadcast revenue from the sale of airtime for programs or spots as the program or advertisement is broadcast. Revenues are reported net of agency commissions, which are calculated as a stated percentage applied to gross billings. Digital revenue is recognized upon delivery of page-views, delivery of impressions as specified in the contract, delivery of the digital newsletter or email, or upon delivery of the advertisement or programming content via streaming. Revenues are reported net of agency commissions, which are calculated as a stated percentage applied to gross billings. Revenue from product sales and book sales are recognized upon shipment net of distribution fees and an allowance for sales returns. Revenues from advertisements in our print magazines are recognized upon delivery of the publication net of agency commissions, which are calculated as a stated percentage applied to gross billings. Subscription revenue from our print magazines and digital newsletters is recognized over the life of the related subscription.
We may enter bundled advertising agreements that include spot advertisements on our radio stations, digital banner placements, print magazine advertisements and sponsorship promotions such as booth space at a station event, or some combination thereof. The multiple deliverables contained in each agreement are accounted for separately over their respective delivery period provided that they are separate units of accounting. The selling price used for each deliverable is based on vendor specific objective evidence if available or estimated selling price if vendor specific objective evidence is not available. Objective evidence of fair value includes the price charged for each element when it is sold separately. The estimated selling price is the price that we would transact if the deliverable was sold regularly on a standalone basis. Arrangement consideration is allocated at the inception of each arrangement to all deliverables using the relative selling price method. The relative selling price method allocates any discount in the arrangement proportionally to each deliverable on the basis of each deliverable's selling price.
We may provide advertising time in exchange for certain products, supplies and services. The terms of the exchanges generally permit for the preemption of such broadcast time in favor of advertisers who purchase time on regular terms. We include the value of such exchanges in both net broadcasting revenues and broadcast operating expenses. The value recorded for barter revenues is based upon management's estimate of the fair value of the products, supplies and services received.
Advertising time that our radio stations exchange for goods and or services is recorded as barter revenue when the advertisement is broadcast at an amount equal to our estimate fair value of what was received. The value of the goods or services received in such barter transactions is charged to expense as used. Barter advertising revenue included in broadcast revenue for the years ended December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014 was approximately $5.3 million, $5.6 million and $6.0 million, respectively. Barter expenses included in broadcast operating expense for the years ended December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014 was approximately $5.3 million, $4.8 million and $6.0 million.
Accounting for Stock-Based Compensation
We account for stock-based compensation under the provisions of FASB ASC Topic 718 CompensationStock Compensation. We record equity awards with stock-based compensation measured at the fair value of the award as of the grant date. We determine the fair value of our options using the Black-Scholes option-pricing model that requires the input of highly subjective assumptions, including the expected stock price volatility and expected term of the options granted. The exercise price for options is equal to the closing market price of Salem Media Group common stock as of the date of grant.
We use the straight-line attribution method to recognize share-based compensation costs over the service period of the award. Upon exercise, cancellation, forfeiture, or expiration of stock options, or upon vesting or forfeiture of restricted stock awards, deferred tax assets for options and restricted stock awards with multiple vesting dates are eliminated for each vesting period on a first-in, first-out basis as if each vesting period was a separate award. To calculate the excess tax benefits available as of the date of adoption for use in offsetting future tax shortfalls, we followed the alternative transition method discussed in the FASB ASC Topic 718.
Accounting for Acquisitions and Upgrades of Radio Station and Other Assets
A majority of our radio station acquisitions have consisted primarily of the FCC licenses to broadcast in a particular market. We often do not acquire the existing format, or we change the format upon acquisition when we find it beneficial. As a result, a substantial portion of the purchase price for the assets of a radio station is allocated to the broadcast license. We may retain a third-party appraiser to estimate the fair value of these radio stations and networks assets. As part of the valuation and appraisal process, the third-party appraiser prepares a report assigning estimated fair values to the various asset categories in our financial statements. The estimated fair value assigned to the FCC license and other assets are subjective in nature and require careful consideration and judgment. Management reviews the third party reports for reasonableness of the assigned values. We believe that these valuations and analysis provide appropriate estimates of the fair value for net assets acquired.
Property and equipment are recorded at their estimated fair value and depreciated on a straight-line basis over their estimated useful lives. Finite-lived intangible assets are recorded at their estimated fair value and amortized on a straight-line basis over their estimated useful lives. Goodwill, which represents the organizational systems and procedures in place to ensure the effective operation of the entity, may also be recorded and tested for impairment. Costs associated with acquisitions, such as consulting and legal fees, are expensed as incurred in corporate operating expenses.
We undertake projects from time to time to upgrade our radio station technical facilities and/or FCC broadcast licenses. Our policy is to capitalize costs incurred up to the point where the project is complete, at which time we transfer the costs to the appropriate fixed asset and/or intangible asset categories. When the completion of a project is contingent upon FCC or other regulatory approval, we assess the probable future benefit of the asset at the time that it is recorded and monitor it through the FCC or other regulatory approval process. In the event the required approval is not considered probable or the project is abandoned, we write-off the capitalized costs of the project.
Accounting for Acquisitions
We account for business acquisitions in accordance with the acquisition method of accounting as specified in FASB ASC Topic 805 Business Combinations. The total acquisition consideration is allocated to assets acquired and liabilities assumed based on their estimated fair values as of the date of the transaction. Estimates of the fair value include discounted estimated cash flows to be generated by the assets and their expected useful lives based on historical experience, market trends and any synergies believed to be achieved from the acquisition. Acquisitions may include contingent consideration, the fair value of which is estimated as of the acquisition date as the present value of the expected contingent payments as determined using weighted probabilities of the payment amounts. We may retain a third-party appraiser to estimate the fair value of the acquired net assets as of the acquisition date. As part of the valuation and appraisal process, the third-party appraiser prepares a report assigning estimated fair values to the various asset categories in our financial statements. These fair value estimates are subjective in nature and require careful consideration and judgment. Management reviews the third party reports for reasonableness of the assigned values. We believe that these valuations and analysis provide appropriate estimates of the fair value for net assets acquired.
Property and equipment are recorded at the estimated fair value and depreciated on a straight-line basis over their estimated useful lives. Finite-lived intangible assets are recorded at their estimated fair value and amortized on a straight-line basis over their estimated useful lives. Goodwill, which represents the organizational systems and procedures in place to ensure the effective operation of the entity, may also be recorded and tested for impairment. Costs associated with acquisitions, such as consulting and legal fees, are expensed as incurred in corporate operating expenses.
Accounting for Contingent Consideration
Our acquisitions may include contingent consideration as part of the purchase price. The fair value of the contingent consideration is estimated as of the acquisition date based on the present value of the contingent payments to be made using a weighted probability of possible payments. The unobservable inputs used in the determination of the fair value of the contingent consideration include managements assumptions about the likelihood of payment based on the established benchmarks and discount rates based on internal rate of return analysis. The fair value measurement includes inputs that are Level 3 measurement as discussed in Note 8 to our consolidated financial statements included in this annual report on Form 10-K. Should actual results increase or decrease as compared to the assumption used in our analysis, the fair value of the contingent consideration obligations will increase or decrease, up to the contracted limit, as applicable. Changes in the fair value of the contingent earn-out consideration could cause a material impact and volatility in our operating results.
Accounting for Discontinued Operations
We regularly review underperforming assets to determine if a sale or disposal might be a better way to monetize the assets. When a station, group of stations, or other asset group is considered for sale or disposal, we review the transaction to determine if or when the entity qualifies as a discontinued operation in accordance with the criteria of FASB ASC Topic 205-20 Discontinued Operations. In April 2014, the FASB issued authoritative guidance which raises the threshold for disposals to qualify as discontinued operations. Under the new guidance, a discontinued operation is (1) a component of an entity or group of components that have been disposed of or are classified as held for sale and represent a strategic shift that has or will have a major effect on an entity's operations and financial results, or (2) an acquired business that is classified as held for sale on the acquisition date.
For our radio stations, we define a cluster as a group of radio stations operating in the same geographic market, sharing the same building, equipment, and managed by a single general manager. The cluster level is the lowest level for which discrete financial information and cash flows are available and the level reviewed by management to analyze operating results. General Managers are compensated based on the results of their cluster as a whole, not the results of any individual radio stations. We have determined that a radio market qualifies for a discontinued operation when management, having the authority to approve the action, commits to a plan to sell the asset (disposal group), the sale is probable, and the sale will result in the exit of a particular geographic market.
During the 4th quarter of 2011, based on operating results that did not meet expectations, we ceased operating Samaritan Fundraising as of December 31, 2011. Samaritan Fundraising, was reported in our Digital Media operations, was a web-based fundraising products company operating from a single facility in Fairfax, VA, under the control of one general manager. As a result of our decision to close operations, there were no material cash flows associated with this entity and we have no ongoing or further involvement in the operations of this entity. We reported the operating results and net assets of this entity as a discontinued operation for all periods presented based on authoritative guidance at that time.
We elected to early-adopt the FASB guidance for discontinued operations issued in April 2014. As of December 2014, we determined that we will no longer produce or distribute TownHall.com magazine. The last issue was delivered in December 2014. Under the new guidance, the ceasing of this publication does not represent a strategic shift in our operations and does not qualify as a discontinued operation.
The markets and entities that we have accounted for as a discontinued operation are explained in more fully in Note 4 Acquisitions and Recent Transactions.
Accounting for Property and Equipment
Property and equipment are recorded at cost less accumulated depreciation. Cost represents the historical cost of acquiring the asset, including the costs necessarily incurred to bring it to the condition and location necessary for its intended use. For assets constructed for our own use, such as towers and buildings that are discrete projects for which costs are separately accumulated and for which construction takes considerable time, we record capitalized interest. The amount capitalized is the cost that could have been avoided had the asset not been constructed and is based on the average accumulated expenditures incurred over the capitalization period at the weighted average rate applicable to our outstanding variable rate debt. We capitalized interest of $0.1 million and $0.2 million during the years ended December 31, 2013 and 2014, respectively. Repair and maintenance costs are charged to expense as incurred. Improvements are capitalized when they extend the life of the asset or enhance the quality or ability of the asset to benefit operations. Depreciation is computed using the straight-line method over estimated useful lives as follows:
The carrying value of property and equipment is evaluated periodically in relation to the operating performance and anticipated future cash flows of the underlying radio stations and business units for indicators of impairment. When indicators of impairment are present, and the cash flows estimated to be generated from these assets is less than the carrying value, an adjustment to reduce the carrying value to the fair market value of the assets is recorded.
Based on changes in management's planned usage, we classified land in Covina, California as held for sale as of June 2012. We evaluated the land for impairment in accordance with guidance for impairment of long-lived assets held for sale. We determined that the carrying value of the land exceeded the estimated fair value less costs to sell. We recorded an impairment charge of $5.6 million associated with the land based on our estimated sale price. In December 2012, after several purchase offers for the land were terminated, we obtained a third party valuation for the land. Based on the fair value determined by the third-party, we recorded an additional impairment charge of $1.2 million associated with the land.
There were no indications of impairment present during the periods ending December 31, 2013 and 2014 and it is our intent to continue to pursue the sale of this land.
The table below presents the fair value measurements used to value this asset.
Accounting for Internally Developed Software and Website Development Costs
We capitalize costs incurred during the application development stage related to the development of internal-use software as specified in FASB ASC Topic 350-40 Internal-Use Software. Capitalized costs are generally amortized over the estimated useful life of three years. Costs incurred related to the conceptual design and maintenance of internal-use software are expensed as incurred. Website development activities include planning, design and development of graphics and content for new websites and operation of existing sites. Costs incurred that involve providing additional functions and features to the website are capitalized. Costs associated with website planning, maintenance, content development and training are expensed as incurred. Capitalized costs are generally amortized over the estimated useful life of three years. We capitalized $2.3 million, $1.5 million and $3.9 million during the years ended December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014, respectively, related to internally developed software and website development costs. Amortization expense of amounts capitalized was $2.1 million, $2.3 million and $2.4 million for the years ended December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014, respectively.
Accounting for Advertising and Promotional Cost
Costs of media advertising and associated production costs are expensed as incurred and amounted to approximately $10.5 million, $10.0 million and $10.2 million for each of the years ending December 31, 2012, 2013, and 2014, respectively.
Accounting for Amortizable Intangible Assets
Intangible assets are recorded at cost less accumulated amortization. Typically, intangible assets are acquired in conjunction with the acquisition of radio stations, Internet businesses and publishing entities. These intangibles are amortized using the straight-line method over the following estimated useful lives:
The carrying value of our amortizable intangible assets are evaluated periodically in relation to the operating performance and anticipated future cash flows of the underlying radio stations and businesses for indicators of impairment. In accordance with FASB ASC Topic 360 Property, Plant and Equipment, when indicators of impairment are present and the undiscounted cash flows estimated to be generated from these assets are less than the carrying amounts of these assets, an adjustment to reduce the carrying value to the fair market value of these assets is recorded, if necessary. No adjustments to the carrying amounts of our amortizable intangible assets were necessary during the years ended December 31, 2012, 2013 or 2014.
Goodwill and Other Indefinite-Lived Intangible Assets
Approximately 71% of our total assets as of December 31, 2014 consist of indefinite-lived intangible assets, such as broadcast licenses, goodwill and mastheads, the value of which depends significantly upon the operating results of our businesses. In the case of our radio stations, we would not be able to operate the properties without the related FCC license for each property. Broadcast licenses are renewed with the FCC every eight years for a nominal cost that is expensed as incurred. We continually monitor our stations' compliance with the various regulatory requirements. Historically, all of our broadcast licenses have been renewed at the end of their respective periods, and we expect that all broadcast licenses will continue to be renewed in the future. Accordingly, we consider our broadcast licenses to be indefinite-lived intangible assets in accordance with FASB ASC Topic 350, Intangibles Goodwill and Other. Broadcast licenses account for approximately 94% of our indefinite-lived intangible assets. Goodwill and magazine mastheads account for the remaining 6%. We do not amortize goodwill or other indefinite-lived intangible assets, but rather test for impairment at least annually or more frequently if events or circumstances indicate that an asset may be impaired.
We complete our annual impairment tests in the fourth quarter of each year. We believe that our estimate of the value of our broadcast licenses, mastheads, and goodwill is a critical accounting estimate as the value is significant in relation to our total assets, and our estimates incorporate variables and assumptions that are based on past experiences and judgment about future operating performance of our markets and business segments. If actual future results are less favorable than the assumptions and estimates we used, we are subject to future impairment charges, the amount of which may be material. The fair value measurements for our indefinite-lived intangible assets use significant unobservable inputs that reflect our own assumptions about the estimates that market participants would use in measuring fair value including assumptions about risk. The unobservable inputs are defined in FASB ASC Topic 820 Fair Value Measurements and Disclosures as Level 3 inputs discussed in detail in Note 8 to our consolidated financial statements included in this annual report on Form 10-K.
Gain or Loss on the Sale or Disposal of Assets
We record gains or losses on the sale or disposal of assets equal to the proceeds, if any, as compared to the net book value. Exchange transactions are accounted for in accordance with FASB ASC Topic 845 Non-Monetary Transactions. For the year ended December 31, 2012, we recorded a $0.2 million pre-tax gain on the sale of WBZS-AM in Pawtucket, Rhode Island and a $0.6 million gain from insurance proceeds for repairs of storm damage in our New York market , partially offset by various fixed asset and equipment disposals including an additional loss associated with the write-off of a receivable from a prior station sale. For the year ended December 31, 2013, we recorded a $0.4 million pre-tax gain on the partial sale of land in our Cleveland market and $0.1 million of insurance proceeds for damages at one of our stations offset by various fixed asset and equipment disposals. For the year ended December 31, 2014, we recorded a $0.3 million pre-tax loss which included a $0.2 million loss associated with the write-off of a receivable from a prior station sale, a $0.2 million loss from the sale of land and building in our Miami market, a $0.1 million loss due to the relocation of our office and studio facility in our San Francisco market offset by $0.1 million of insurance proceeds from a claim associated with one of our markets as well as other various fixed asset and equipment disposals.
We lease various facilities including broadcast tower and transmitter sites. When we enter a lease agreement, we review the terms to determine the appropriate classification of the lease as a capital lease or operating lease based on the factors listed in FASB ASC Topic 840 Leases. Our current lease terms generally range from one to twenty-five years with rent expense recorded on a straight-line basis for financial reporting purposes. We also sublease towers that we own under various agreements with other broadcasters. Subleases generally cover a sixty-year term, over which time we recognize rental income on a straight-line basis. Deferred rent revenue was $4.5 million and $4.4 million at December 31, 2013 and 2014, respectively.
We may elect to construct or otherwise invest in leasehold improvements to properties. We capitalize the cost of the improvements that are then amortized over the shorter of the useful life of the improvement or the remaining lease term.
Deferred Financing Costs
Deferred financing costs consist of bank loan fees incurred upon entering our Term Loan B and Revolver as of September 30, 2013. The costs are being amortized over the seven year term of the Term Loan B and the five year term of the Revolver as an adjustment to interest expense. During the year ended December 31, 2014, approximately $0.3 million of bank loan fees were written off in conjunction with the early retirement of the Term Loan B. Deferred financing costs were $4.1 million and $3.2 million at December 31, 2013 and 2014, respectively.
Partial Self-Insurance on Employee Health Plan
We provide health insurance benefits to eligible employees under a self-insured plan whereby the company pays actual medical claims subject to certain stop loss limits. We record self-insurance liabilities based on actual claims filed and an estimate of those claims incurred but not reported. Any projection of losses concerning our liability is subject to a high degree of variability. Among the causes of this variability are unpredictable external factors such as future inflation rates, changes in severity, benefit level changes, medical costs and claim settlement patterns. Should the actual amount of claims increase or decrease beyond what was anticipated, we may adjust our future reserves. Our self-insurance liability was $0.5 million and $0.9 million at December 31, 2013 and 2014, respectively.
Local Programming and Marketing Agreement Fees
We may enter into a Local Marketing Agreement (LMA) or Time Brokerage Agreement (TBA) in connection with acquisitions of radio stations that are pending FCC regulatory approval of transfer of the broadcast licenses. Under the terms of these agreements, we make specified periodic payments to the owner in exchange for the right to program and sell advertising for a specified portion of the station's inventory of broadcast time. We record revenues and expenses associated with the portion of the station's inventory of broadcast time it manages. Nevertheless, as the holder of the FCC license, the owner-operator retains control and responsibility for the operation of the station, including responsibility over all programming broadcast on the station. We also enter into LMA's in connection with dispositions of radio stations. In such cases, we may receive periodic payments in exchange for allowing the buyer to program and sell advertising for a portion of the station's inventory of broadcast time.
We are exposed to fluctuations in interest rates. We actively monitor these fluctuations and use derivative instruments from time to time to manage the related risk. In accordance with our risk management strategy, we may use derivative instruments only for the purpose of managing risk associated with an asset, liability, committed transaction, or probable forecasted transaction that is identified by management. Our use of derivative instruments may result in short-term gains or losses that may increase the volatility of our earnings.
Under FASB ASC Topic 815 Derivatives and Hedging the effective portion of the gain or loss on a derivative instrument designated and qualifying as a cash flow hedging instrument shall be reported as a component of other comprehensive income (outside earnings) and reclassified into earnings in the same period or periods during which the hedged forecasted transaction affects earnings. The remaining gain or loss on the derivative instrument, if any, shall be recognized currently in earnings.
On March 27, 2013, we entered into an interest rate swap agreement with Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. that began on March 28, 2014 with a notional principal amount of $150.0 million. The agreement was entered to offset risks associated with the variable interest rate on our Term Loan B. Payments on the swap are due on a quarterly basis with a LIBOR floor of 0.625%. The swap expires on March 28, 2019 at a fixed rate of 1.645%. The interest rate swap agreement was not designated as a cash flow hedge, and as a result, all changes in the fair value are recognized in the current period statement of operations rather than through other comprehensive income. We recorded an asset of $0.5 million as of December 31, 2014, representing the change in the fair value of the interest rate swap agreement. The swap was valued based on observable inputs for similar assets and liabilities and other observable inputs for interest rates and yield curves, which are classified within Level 2 inputs in the fair value hierarchy described below and in Note 8 to our consolidated financial statements included in this annual report on Form 10-K.
Fair Value Accounting
FASB ASC Topic 820 Fair Value Measurements and Disclosures established a single definition of fair value in generally accepted accounting principles and expanded disclosure requirements about fair value measurements. The provision applies to other accounting pronouncements that require or permit fair value measurements. We adopted the fair value provisions for financial assets and financial liabilities effective January 1, 2008. The adoption had a material impact on our consolidated financial position, results of operations or cash flows. We adopted fair value provisions for nonfinancial assets and nonfinancial liabilities effective January 1, 2009. This includes applying the fair value concept to (i) nonfinancial assets and liabilities initially measured at fair value in business combinations; (ii) reporting units or nonfinancial assets and liabilities measured at fair value in conjunction with goodwill impairment testing; (iii) other nonfinancial assets measured at fair value in conjunction with impairment assessments; and (iv) asset retirement obligations initially measured at fair value. The adoption of the fair value provisions of FASB ASC Topic 820 to nonfinancial assets and nonfinancial liabilities did not have a material impact on our consolidated financial position, results of operations or cash flows.
The fair value provisions include guidance on how to estimate the fair value of assets and liabilities in the current economic environment and reemphasizes that the objective of a fair value measurement remains an exit price. If we were to conclude that there has been a significant decrease in the volume and level of activity of the asset or liability in relation to normal market activities, quoted market values may not be representative of fair value and we may conclude that a change in valuation technique or the use of multiple valuation techniques may be appropriate.
The degree of judgment utilized in measuring the fair value of financial instruments generally correlates to the level of pricing observability. Pricing observability is affected by a number of factors, including the type of financial instrument, whether the financial instrument is new to the market, and the characteristics specific to the transaction. Financial instruments with readily available active quoted prices or for which fair value can be measured from actively quoted prices generally will have a higher degree of pricing observability and a lesser degree of judgment utilized in measuring fair value. Conversely, financial instruments rarely traded or not quoted will generally have less (or no) pricing observability and a higher degree of judgment utilized in measuring fair value.
FASB ASC Topic 820 established a hierarchal disclosure framework associated with the level of pricing observability utilized in measuring fair value. This framework defined three levels of inputs to the fair value measurement process and requires that each fair value measurement be assigned to a level corresponding to the lowest level input that is significant to the fair value measurement in its entirety. The three broad levels of inputs defined by the FASB ASC Topic 820 hierarchy are as follows:
As of December 31, 2014, the carrying value of cash and cash equivalents, trade accounts receivables, accounts payable, accrued expenses and accrued interest approximates fair value due to the short-term nature of such instruments. The carrying value of other long-term liabilities approximates fair value as the related interest rates approximate rates currently available to the company. The following table summarizes the fair value of our financial assets and liabilities that are measured at fair value:
Long-term Debt and Debt Covenant Compliance
Our classification of outstanding borrowings on our Term Loan B as long-term debt on our balance sheet is based on our assessment that, under the terms of our Credit Agreement and after considering our projected operating results and cash flows for the coming year, no principal payments are required to be made. The Term Loan B has a term of seven years, maturing in March 2020. We are required to make principal payments of $750,000 per quarter, which began on September 30, 2013. Prepayments may be made against the outstanding balance of our Term Loan B. Each repayment of the Term Loan B is applied ratably to each of the next four principal installments thereof in the direct order of maturity and thereafter to the remaining principal balance in reverse order of maturity.
Our projections of operating results and cash flows for the coming year are estimates dependent upon a number of factors including but not limited to developments in the markets in which we are operating in and varying economic and political factors. Accordingly, these projections are inherently uncertain and our actual results could differ from these estimates.
Income Taxes and Uncertain Tax Positions
We account for income taxes in accordance with FASB ASC Topic 740 Income Taxes. Deferred income taxes are determined based on the difference between the consolidated financial statement and income tax bases of assets and liabilities using enacted tax rates in effect in the years in which the differences are expected to reverse. Our evaluation was performed for tax years that remain subject to examination by major tax jurisdictions, which range from 2010 through 2013.
Upon the adoption of the provisions on January 1, 2007, we had $3.0 million in liabilities related to uncertain tax positions, including $0.9 million recognized under FASB ASC Topic 450 Contingencies and carried forward from prior years and $2.1 million recognized upon adoption of the tax provision changes as a reduction to retained earnings. Included in the $2.1 million accrual was $0.1 million in related interest, net of federal income tax benefits. During 2014, we recognized a net decrease of $0.4 million in liabilities and at December 31, 2014, had $0.5 million in liabilities for unrecognized tax benefits. Included in this liability amount is $3.000 of accrued interest, net of federal income tax benefits and the related penalties recorded in income tax expense on our consolidated financial statements included in this annual report on Form 10-K. Management expects an additional reduction of $0.4 million in the reserve over the next twelve months due to statute expirations.
A summary of the changes in the gross amount of unrecognized tax benefits is as follows:
Valuation Allowance (deferred taxes)
For financial reporting purposes, we recorded a valuation allowance of $3.0 million as of December 31, 2014 to offset a portion of the deferred tax assets related to the state net operating loss carryforwards. We regularly review our financial forecasts in an effort to determine our ability to utilize the net operating loss carryforwards for tax purposes. Accordingly, the valuation allowance is adjusted periodically based on our estimate of the benefit the company will receive from such carryforwards.
Royalty Advances to Authors
Royalties due to book authors are paid in advance and capitalized. Royalties are expensed as the related book revenues are earned or when we determine that future recovery of the royalty is not likely. We reviewed historical data associated with royalty advances, earnings and recoverability based on actual results of Regnery Publishing. Historically, the longer the unearned portion of an advance remains outstanding, the less likely it is that we will recover the advance through the sale of the book. We apply this historical experience to outstanding royalty advances to estimate the likelihood of recovery. A provision was established to expense the balance of any unearned advance which we believe is not recoverable. Our analysis also considers other discrete factors, such as death of an author, any decision to not pursue publication of a title, poor market demand or other relevant factors.
Our inventory on hand consists of published books and wellness products. Inventory is recorded at the lower of cost or market as determined on a First-In First-Out (FIFO) cost method.
We reviewed historical data associated with book and wellness product inventories held by Regnery Publishing and Eagle Wellness, respectively. We utilized this historical data associated with sales returns and allowances and royalty reserves, as well as overall economic conditions and product demand, to estimate the fair value of inventory on hand. A provision has been established to expense the balance of unsold inventory for which we believe the cost to be unrecoverable.
Basic and Diluted Net Earnings Per Share
Basic net earnings per share has been computed using the weighted average number of Class A and Class B shares of common stock outstanding during the period. Diluted net earnings per share is computed using the weighted average number of shares of Class A and Class B common stock outstanding during the period plus the dilutive effects of stock options.
Options to purchase 1,927,099, 2,162,067 and 1,816,204 shares of Class A common stock were outstanding at December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014, respectively. Diluted weighted average shares outstanding exclude outstanding stock options whose exercise price is in excess of the average price of the company's stock price. These options are excluded from the respective computations of diluted net income or loss per share because their effect would be anti-dilutive. The number of anti-dilutive shares as of December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014 was 480,825, nil and 589,437, respectively.
The following table sets forth the shares used to compute basic and diluted net earnings per share for the periods indicated:
We have two reportable segments, radio broadcasting and digital media. Digital media (formerly Internet and e-commerce) became a reportable segment as of the first quarter of 2011 upon the realization of organic and acquisition related revenue growth. Our acquisition of Eagle Publishing on January 10, 2014, which included Regnery Publishing, Eagle Financial Publications, Eagle Wellness, Human Events and Red State, resulted in operational changes in our business and a realignment of our operating segments. We have three operating segments: (1) Broadcast, (2) Digital Media, and (3) Publishing. We changed the composition of our operating segments to reflect management's view of the operating results for each segment.
Our operating segments reflect how our chief operating decision makers, which we define as a collective group of senior executives, assesses the performance of each operating segment and determines the appropriate allocations of resources to each segment. Our operating segments do not all meet the quantitative thresholds to qualify as reportable segments; however, we have elected to disclose the results of these non-reportable operating segments as we believe this information is useful to readers of our financial statements. We continue to review our operating segment classifications to align with operational changes in our business and may make future changes as necessary.
We measure and evaluate results of our operating segments based on income and expenses that do not include allocations of costs related to corporate functions, such as accounting and finance, human resources, legal, tax and treasury; nor do they include costs such as amortization, depreciation, taxes or interest expense. Changes to our operating segments did not impact the reporting units used to test non-amortizable assets for impairment. All prior periods presented have been updated to reflect the new composition of our operating segments.
We present our segment operating results in Note 16 to our consolidated financial statements included in this annual report on Form 10-K.
Variable Interest Entities
We account for entities qualifying as variable interest entities (VIEs) in accordance with Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) Accounting Standards Codification (ASC) Topic 810, Consolidation which requires VIEs to be consolidated by the primary beneficiary. The primary beneficiary is the entity that holds the majority of the beneficial interests in the VIE. A VIE is an entity for which the primary beneficiary's interest in the entity can change with variations in factors other than the amount of investment in the entity.
We may enter into Local Marketing Agreements (LMAs) contemporaneously with entering an Asset Purchase Agreement (APA) to acquire or sell a radio station. We may also enter into Time Brokerage Agreements (TBAs). Typically, both LMAs and TBAs are contractual agreements under which the station owner/licensee makes airtime available to a programmer/licensee in exchange for a fee and reimbursement of certain expenses. LMAs and TBAs are subject to compliance with the antitrust laws and the communications laws, including the requirement that the licensee must maintain independent control over the station and, in particular, its personnel, programming, and finances. The FCC has held that such agreements do not violate the communications laws as long as the licensee of the station receiving programming from another station maintains ultimate responsibility for, and control over, station operations and otherwise ensures compliance with the communications laws.
The requirements of FASB ASC Topic 810 may apply to entities under LMAs or TBAs, depending on the facts and circumstances related to each transaction. As of December 31, 2014 we did not consolidate any entities with which we entered into LMAs or TBAs under the guidance in FASB ASC Topic 810.
Concentrations of Business Risks
We derive a substantial part of our total revenues from the sale of advertising. For the years ended December 31, 2012, 2013 and 2014, 41.3%, 40.8% and 40.2% of our total revenues, respectively, were generated from the sale of broadcast advertising. We are particularly dependent on revenue from stations in the Los Angeles and Dallas markets, which generated 16.1% and 23.5% for the year ended December 31, 2012, 15.1% and 25.4% for the year ended December 31, 2013 and 14.3% and 23.9% for the year ended December 31, 2014. Because substantial portions of our revenues are derived from local advertisers in these key markets, our ability to generate revenues in those markets could be adversely affected by local or regional economic downturns.
Concentrations of Credit Risks
Financial instruments that potentially subject us to concentrations of credit risk consist of cash and cash equivalents; trade accounts receivable and derivative instruments. We place our cash and cash equivalents with high quality financial institutions. Such balances may be in excess of FDIC insured limits. To manage the related credit exposure, we continually monitor the credit worthiness of the financial institutions where we have deposits. Concentrations of credit risk with respect to trade accounts receivable are limited due to the wide variety of customers and markets in which we provide services, as well as the dispersion of our operations across many geographic areas. We perform ongoing credit evaluations of our customers, but generally do not require collateral to support customer receivables. We establish an allowance for doubtful accounts based on various factors including the credit risk of specific customers, age of receivables outstanding, historical trends, economic conditions and other information. Historically, our bad debt expense has been within management's expectations.
Use of Estimates
The preparation of financial statements in conformity with GAAP requires management to make estimates and assumptions that affect the amounts reported in the financial statements and accompanying notes. Actual results could differ from those estimates. Significant areas for which management uses estimates include: (1) asset impairments, including broadcasting licenses, goodwill and other indefinite-lived intangible assets; (2) income tax valuation allowances; (3) uncertain tax positions; (4) allowance for doubtful accounts; (5) inventory reserves; (6) reserves for royalty advances; (7) self-insurance reserves; (8) fair value of equity awards; (9) estimated lives for tangible and intangible assets; (10) fair value measurements; (11) contingency reserves; (12) probabilities associated with the potential for contingent earn-out consideration; and (13) sales returns and allowances. These estimates require the use of judgment as future events and the effect of these events cannot be predicted with certainty. The estimates will change as new events occur, as more experience is acquired and as more information is obtained. We evaluate and update our assumptions and estimates on an ongoing basis and we may consult outside experts to assist as considered necessary.
Certain reclassifications have been made to the prior year financial statements to conform to the current year presentation. These reclassifications include: (1) the separation of our non-broadcast operating segment into two operating segments as of the first quarter of 2011, (2) the reporting of discontinued operations, and (3) the change in composition of our operating segments based on our acquisition of Eagle Publishing during 2014 to conform to how our chief operating decision makers, who we define as a collective group of senior executives, assesses the performance of each operating segment and determines the appropriate allocations of resources to each segment.
Recent Accounting Pronouncements
Changes to accounting principles are established by the FASB in the form of accounting standards updates (ASU's) to the FASB's Accounting Standards Codification. We consider the applicability and impact of all ASU's. ASU's not listed below were assessed and determined to be not applicable to our financial position or results of operations.
In August 2014, the FASB issued ASU 2014-15, Disclosure of Uncertainties About an Entities Ability to Continue as a Going Concern, which requires management to assess a company's ability to continue as a going concern and to provide related footnote disclosures. The new standard provides management with specific guidance on the assessments and related disclosures as well as provides a longer look-forward period as one year from the financial statement issuance date. The new standard is effective for the annual period ending after December 15, 2016, with early adoption permitted. The adoption of this ASU is not expected to have a material impact on our financial position, results of operations, cash flows, or presentation thereof.
In May 2014, the FASB issued ASU 2014-09, Revenue from Contracts with Customers, which requires an entity to recognize the amount of revenue to which it expects to be entitled for the transfer of promised goods or services to customers. The new standard is effective as of the first interim period within annual reporting periods beginning on or after December 15, 2016, and will replace most existing revenue recognition guidance in U.S. GAAP. Early adoption is not permitted. The standard permits the use of either the retrospective or cumulative effect transition method. We are evaluating the effect that ASU 2014-09 will have on our consolidated financial statements and related disclosures. We have not yet selected a transition method nor have we determined the effect of this ASU on our financial position, results of operations, cash flows, or presentation thereof.
In April 2014, the FASB issued ASU 2014-08, Presentation of Financial Statements and Property, Plant, and Equipment: Reporting Discontinued Operations and Disclosures of Disposals of Components of an Entity. ASU 2014-08 limits the requirement to report discontinued operations to disposals of components of an entity that represent strategic shifts that have (or will have) a major effect on an entity's operations and financial results. The amendments also require expanded disclosures concerning discontinued operations and disclosures of certain financial results attributable to a disposal of a significant component of an entity that does not qualify for discontinued operations reporting. These amendments are effective prospectively for reporting periods beginning on or after December 15, 2014, with early adoption permitted. The adoption of this ASU is not expected to have a material impact on our financial position, results of operations, cash flows, or presentation thereof.
In July 2013, the FASB issued ASU 2013-11, Presentation of Unrecognized Tax Benefit When a Net Operating Loss Carryforward, a Similar Tax Loss, or a Tax Credit Carryforward Exists, an amendment to FASB ASC Topic 740, Income Taxes, (FASB ASU 2013-11). This update clarifies that an unrecognized tax benefit, or a portion of an unrecognized tax benefit, should be presented in the financial statements as a reduction to a deferred tax asset for a net operating loss carryforward, a similar tax loss, or a tax credit carryforward if such settlement is required or expected in the event the uncertain tax position is disallowed. In situations where a net operating loss carryforward, a similar tax loss, or a tax credit carryforward is not available at the reporting date under the tax law of the applicable jurisdiction or the tax law of the jurisdiction does not require, and the entity does not intend to use, the deferred tax asset for such purpose, the unrecognized tax benefit should be presented in the financial statements as a liability and should not be combined with deferred tax assets. This ASU is effective prospectively for fiscal years, and interim periods within those years, beginning after December 15, 2013. Retrospective application is permitted. The adoption of this ASU did not have a material impact on our financial position, results of operations, cash flows, or presentation thereof.
In July 2013, the FASB issued ASU 2013-10, Inclusion of the Fed Funds Effective Swap Rate (or Overnight Index Swap Rate) as a Benchmark Interest Rate for Hedge Accounting Purposes, an amendment to FASB ASC Topic 815, Derivatives and Hedging ("FASB ASC Topic 815"). The update permits the use of the Fed Funds Effective Swap Rate to be used as a US benchmark interest rate for hedge accounting purposes under FASB ASC Topic 815, in addition to the interest rates on direct Treasury obligations of the US government (UST) and the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR). The update also removes the restriction on using different benchmark rates for similar hedges. This ASU is effective prospectively for qualifying new or redesignated hedging relationships entered into on or after July 17, 2013. The adoption of this ASU did not have a material impact on our financial position, results of operations, cash flows, or presentation thereof.
In February 2013, the FASB issued ASU 2013-04, Obligations Resulting from Joint and Several Liability Arrangements for Which the Total Amount of the Obligation is Fixed at the Reporting Date, an amendment to FASB ASC Topic 405, Liabilities (FASB ASC Topic 405). The update requires an entity to measure obligations resulting from joint and several liability arrangements for which the total amount of the obligation is fixed as of the reporting date as the sum of the obligation the entity agreed to pay among its co-obligors and any additional amount the entity expects to pay on behalf of its co-obligors. This ASU is effective for annual and interim periods beginning after December 15, 2013 and is required to be applied retrospectively to all prior periods presented for those obligations that existed upon adoption of the ASU. The adoption of this ASU did not have a material impact on our financial position, results of operations, cash flows, or presentation thereof.