tronc, Inc. Reports Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2017 Results

CHICAGO, March 07, 2018 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- tronc, Inc. (NASDAQ:TRNC) today announced financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2017. Please note, the Company’s fiscal year 2017 consisted of 53 weeks with 13 weeks in each of the first three quarters and 14 weeks in the fourth quarter, compared to fiscal year 2016 which consisted of a 52-week year with 13 weeks in each quarter.

Fourth Quarter 2017 and Year-to-Date 2018 Highlights:

  • Strong fourth quarter 2017 digital advertising revenue growth of 19% compared to fourth quarter 2016
  • Digital only subscribers were 320,000 in fourth quarter 2017, up 100% year-over-year
  • Average monthly unique visitors of 79.3 million in fourth quarter 2017, up 40% from fourth quarter 2016
  • Entered into a definitive agreement to sell the Los Angeles Times, The San Diego Union-Tribune and various other California properties
  • Acquired a majority ownership stake in BestReviews, an online product review company

“The actions we took throughout the year brought solid digital growth along with our continuing commitment to deliver excellence in journalism,” said tronc CEO Justin Dearborn. “Looking ahead, we remain focused on the consistent execution of our growth strategy.”

Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2017 Results
Fourth quarter 2017 total revenues were $435.0 million, up 2.3% compared to $425.4 million for fourth quarter 2016. Total revenues for the full year 2017 were $1.52 billion, down 5.1% from full year 2016. Revenue for the fourth quarter 2017 includes $32.6 million attributable to the New York Daily News (NYDN), which was acquired on September 3, 2017, and an additional $24.1 million of revenue relating to the extra week in 2017 generated by our other properties. Full year 2017 revenues include these amounts as well as an additional $7.6 million generated by the NYDN for the portion of the third quarter 2017 during which we owned it.

Fourth quarter 2017 advertising revenue was down 5.0%, compared to fourth quarter 2016, and decreased 11.7% for full year 2017 on a year-over-year basis. Digital Advertising showed growth of 18.8% in the fourth quarter 2017 compared to fourth quarter 2016. Circulation revenue for fourth quarter 2017 was up 17.3%, compared to the same period of 2016, and was up 6.8% for full year 2017 over full year 2016.

Total operating expenses, including depreciation and amortization, for fourth quarter 2017 were $405.7 million, up 5.8%, compared to $383.6 million for fourth quarter of 2016. The increase was mainly due to the impact of including NYDN and the additional week, partially offset by continued cost reductions. Full year 2017 total operating expenses of $1.46 billion were down 6.2% compared to $1.55 billion for full year 2016.

Net loss for fourth quarter 2017 was $0.4 million, or $0.01 per share, compared to net income $19.4 million, or $0.53 per share, for fourth quarter of 2016. Full year 2017 net income was $5.5 million, or $0.16 per share, compared to $6.5 million, or $0.19 per share, for full year 2016. Adjusted diluted EPS for fourth quarter 2017 was $0.30, compared to $0.88 for fourth quarter 2016. Full year 2017 adjusted diluted EPS was $1.08, compared to $1.71 for full year 2016. Fourth quarter and full year 2017 net income was impacted by the introduction of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 in that there was a $10.8 million, one-time reduction in deferred tax assets as a direct result of the federal statutory tax rate declining from 35% to 21%.

Adjusted EBITDA for fourth quarter 2017 was $65.4 million, down 2.1% on a year-over-year basis. Full year 2017 adjusted EBITDA was $178.8 million, compared to $180.5 million for full year 2016.

Net cash provided by operating activities was $26.2 million for fourth quarter 2017. Capital expenditures totaled $10.9 million for the quarter. Debt was reduced by $8.5 million and pension liabilities decreased by $1.8 million during the quarter, compared to third quarter 2017. Cash balance grew to $189.7 million, which translated into a net debt decrease of $13.0 million in fourth quarter 2017 compared to third quarter 2017.

Segment Results
The Company operates in two segments: troncM, which is comprised of the Company’s media groups excluding their digital revenues and related expenses, except digital subscription revenues when bundled with a print subscription, and troncX, which includes all digital revenues and related expenses of the Company from local tronc websites, third party websites, mobile applications, digital only subscriptions, Tribune Content Agency, The Daily Meal and forsalebyowner.com.

troncM
Included in the tables below is segment reporting for troncM and troncX for the fourth quarters of 2017 and 2016.
Fourth quarter 2017 troncM total revenues were nearly flat at $366.0 million, compared to fourth quarter 2016. Full year 2017 total revenues were $1.29 billion, down 6.6% compared to full year 2016. Advertising revenue for fourth quarter 2017 declined by 11.2% on a year-over-year basis, which was partially offset by an increase of 15.5% in circulation revenues. Full year 2017 advertising revenue of $577.4 was down 15.2% compared to full year 2016.

Fourth quarter 2017 operating expenses for troncM increased 4.8% compared to the prior-year quarter, driven primarily by the inclusion of NYDN. Full year 2017 operating expenses were down 5.3% on a year-over-year basis. Fourth quarter 2017 income from operations for troncM was $39.8 million or a 29.3% decline from the prior-year quarter. Income from operations for full year 2017 was $96.1 million, compared to $120.8 million in the prior year period.

troncX
Total revenues for troncX for the fourth quarter of 2017 were $69.8 million, up 15.8% from prior-year quarter, and were $240.0 million for full year 2017, compared to $236.2 million for full year 2016. Fourth quarter 2017 advertising revenues for troncX increased 18.8%, while content revenues, which includes digital only subscriptions and content syndication, increased by 4.4%. For the full year 2017, advertising and content revenues were up 0.1% and 8.5%, respectively, on a year-over-year basis. Fourth quarter 2017 income from operations for troncX was $6.8 million, a decrease of 22.7% from the prior-year period. Income from operations for full year was $24.8 million, down 2.8% from full year 2016.

Total fourth quarter 2017 average monthly unique visitors were 79.3 million, up 40% from the prior-year quarter. Digital only subscribers grew to 320,000, up 100% from the prior year and up 21% sequentially.

Notable Activity
Subsequent to the close of full year 2017, the Company announced the following items:

  • A definitive agreement to sell the Los Angeles Times, The San Diego Union-Tribune and various other California properties (the Portfolio) to Nant Capital, LLC, a private investment vehicle of Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, for $500 million in cash plus the assumption of approximately $90 million in pension liabilities.
  • The acquisition of a majority ownership stake in BestReviews, an online product review company based in San Francisco, California, and Reno, Nevada.

2018 Outlook
The company is planning on providing a 2018 outlook on its first quarter 2018 earnings conference call.

Conference Call Details
tronc will host a conference call to discuss the Company’s fourth quarter and full year 2017 results at 5 p.m. Eastern Time (4 p.m. Central Time) on Wednesday, March 7, 2018. The conference call may be accessed via tronc’s Investor Relations website at investor.tronc.com or by dialing 844.494.0195 (508.637.5599 for international callers) and entering conference ID 1638119. An archived version of the webcast will also be available for one year on the tronc website. To access the replay via telephone, available until November 8, 2017, dial 855.859.2056 (404.537.3406 for international callers), conference ID 1638119.

Non-GAAP Financial Information
To provide investors with additional information regarding tronc’s financial results, this press release includes references to Adjusted EBITDA, AEBITDA Margin, Adjusted total operating expenses, Adjusted Net Income, Adjusted Diluted EPS and Net Debt. These are not measures presented in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in the United States (US GAAP) and tronc’s use of the terms Adjusted EBITDA, AEBITDA Margin, Adjusted total operating expenses, Adjusted Net Income, Adjusted Diluted EPS and Net Debt may vary from that of others in the Company’s industry. Adjusted EBITDA, AEBITDA Margin, Adjusted total operating expenses, Adjusted Net Income, Adjusted Diluted EPS and Net Debt should not be considered as an alternative to net income (loss), income from operations, operating expenses, net income (loss) per diluted share, revenues or any other performance measures derived in accordance with US GAAP as measures of operating performance or liquidity. Further information regarding tronc’s presentation of these measures, including a reconciliation of Adjusted EBITDA, AEBITDA Margin, Adjusted total operating expenses, Adjusted Net Income and Adjusted Diluted EPS to the most directly comparable US GAAP financial measure, is included below in this press release.

Cautionary Statements Regarding Forward-looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that are based largely on our current expectations and reflect various estimates and assumptions by us. Forward-looking statements are subject to certain risks, trends and uncertainties that could cause actual results and achievements to differ materially from those expressed in such forward-looking statements. Such risks, trends and uncertainties, which in some instances are beyond our control, include: changes in advertising demand, circulation levels and audience shares; competition and other economic conditions; factors impacting the ability to close our recently announced agreement to sell our California properties; economic and market conditions that could impact the level of our required contributions to the defined benefit pension plans to which we contribute; decisions by trustees under rehabilitation plans (if applicable) or other contributing employers with respect to multiemployer plans to which we contribute which could impact the level of our contributions; our ability to develop and grow our online businesses; changes in newsprint price; our ability to maintain effective internal control over financial reporting; concentration of stock ownership among our principal stockholders whose interest may differ from those of other stockholders; and other events beyond our control that may result in unexpected adverse operating results. The Company’s actual results could also be impacted by the other risks detailed from time to time in its publicly filed documents, including in Item 1A (Risk Factors) of its most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, in its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and in other reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “could,” “should,” “intend,” “may,” “will,” “plan,” “seek” and similar expressions generally identify forward-looking statements. However, such words are not the exclusive means for identifying forward-looking statements, and their absence does not mean that the statement is not forward looking. Whether or not any such forward-looking statements, in fact occur will depend on future events, some of which are beyond our control. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on such forward-looking statements, which are being made as of the date of this Annual Report on Form 10-K. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

About tronc, Inc.
tronc, Inc. (NASDAQ:TRNC) is a media company rooted in award-winning journalism. Headquartered in Chicago, tronc operates newsrooms in ten markets with titles including the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, New York Daily News, The Baltimore Sun, Orlando Sentinel, South Florida's Sun-Sentinel, Virginia’s Daily Press, The Morning Call of Allentown, Pennsylvania, Hartford Courant, and The San Diego Union-Tribune. Our legacy of brands has earned a combined 105 Pulitzer Prizes and is committed to informing, inspiring and engaging local communities.

Our brands create and distribute content across our media portfolio, offering integrated marketing, media, and business services to consumers and advertisers, including digital solutions and advertising opportunities

Investor Relations Contact:
Aaron Miles
tronc Investor Relations
312.222.4345
amiles@tronc.com

Media Contact:
Marisa Kollias
tronc Corporate Communications
312.222.3308
mkollias@tronc.com

Source: tronc, Inc.

Exhibits:
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income (Loss)
Segment Income, Expenses and Non-GAAP Reconciliations
Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets
Non-GAAP Reconciliations – Net Income (Loss) to Adjusted EBITDA
Non-GAAP Reconciliations – Total Operating Expenses to Adjusted Total Operating Expenses
Non-GAAP Reconciliations – Net Income (Loss) to Adjusted Net Income and Adjusted Diluted EPS
Non-GAAP Reconciliations – Total Debt to Net Debt

TRONC, INC.
CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF INCOME (LOSS)
(In thousands, except per share data)
(Unaudited)
Preliminary
Three months ended Year Ended
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
Operating revenues $435,020 $425,422 $1,524,018 $1,606,378
Operating expenses 405,651 383,572 1,457,429 1,553,265
Income from operations 29,369 41,850 66,589 53,113
Interest expense, net (7,056) (6,587) (26,481) (26,703)
Premium on stock buyback (6,031)
Loss on equity investments, net (582) (203) 3,139 (690)
Reorganization items, net (23) (259)
Income before income taxes 21,731 35,037 37,216 25,461
Income tax expense 22,104 15,621 31,681 18,924
Net income (loss) $(373) $19,416 $5,535 $6,537
Net income (loss) per common share:
Basic $(0.01) $0.53 $0.16 $0.19
Diluted $(0.01) $0.53 $0.16 $0.19
Weighted average shares outstanding:
Basic 33,610 36,428 33,996 33,788
Diluted 33,610 36,677 34,285 33,935

The tables below show the segmentation of income and expenses for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2017 as compared to the three and twelve months ended December 25, 2016. For the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2017, the three-month period consists of 14 weeks and the twelve-month period consists of 53 weeks. For the three and twelve months ended December 25, 2016, the three-month period consists of 13 weeks and the twelve-month period consists of 52 weeks.

troncM troncX Corporate and
Eliminations
Consolidated
Three months ended Three months ended Three months ended Three months ended
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Total revenues$ 366,015 $ 367,463 $ 69,753 $ 60,227 $ (748) $ (2,268) $ 435,020 $ 425,422
Operating expenses326,182 311,148 62,916 51,387 16,553 21,037 405,651 383,572
Income (loss) from operations39,833 56,315 6,837 8,840 (17,301) (23,305) 29,369 41,850
Depreciation and amortization5,506 6,170 4,620 3,030 4,574 5,500 14,700 14,700
Adjustments11,019 1,677 614 561 9,686 8,031 21,319 10,269
Adjusted EBITDA$56,358 $64,162 $12,071 $12,431 $(3,041) $(9,774) $65,388 $66,819


troncM troncX Corporate and
Eliminations
Consolidated
Year Ended Year Ended Year Ended Year Ended
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Dec. 31,
2017
Dec. 25,
2016
Total revenues$1,287,217 $1,378,028 $239,979 $236,171 $(3,178) $(7,821) $1,524,018 $1,606,378
Operating expenses1,191,072 1,257,265 215,149 210,620 51,208 85,380 1,457,429 1,553,265
Income (loss) from operations96,145 120,763 24,830 25,551 (54,386) (93,201) 66,589 53,113
Depreciation and amortization23,727 23,656 15,560 11,563 17,409 22,280 56,696 57,499
Adjustments28,740 15,147 4,067 3,978 22,719 50,804 55,526 69,929
Adjusted EBITDA$148,612 $159,566 $44,457 $41,092 $(14,258) $(20,117) $178,811 $180,541

troncM

Three Months Ended Year Ended
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
%
Change
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
%
Change
Operating revenues:
Advertising $166,565 $187,609 (11.2%) $577,380 $680,842 (15.2%)
Circulation 145,550 126,046 15.5% 508,247 482,877 5.3%
Other 53,900 53,808 0.2% 201,590 214,309 (5.9%)
Total revenues 366,015 367,463 (0.4%) 1,287,217 1,378,028 (6.6%)
Operating expenses 326,182 311,148 4.8% 1,191,072 1,257,265 (5.3%)
Income from operations 39,833 56,315 (29.3%) 96,145 120,763 (20.4%)
Depreciation and amortization 5,506 6,170 (10.8%) 23,727 23,656 0.3%
Adjustments 11,019 1,677 * 28,740 15,147 89.7%
Adjusted EBITDA $56,358 $64,162 (12.2%) $148,612 $159,566 (6.9%)

* Represents positive or negative change in excess of 100%

troncX

Three Months Ended Year Ended
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
%
Change
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
%
Change
Operating revenues:
Advertising $56,525 $47,560 18.8% $194,237 $193,997 0.1%
Content 13,228 12,667 4.4% 45,742 42,174 8.5%
Total revenues 69,753 60,227 15.8% 239,979 236,171 1.6%
Operating expenses 62,916 51,387 22.4% 215,149 210,620 2.2%
Income from operations 6,837 8,840 (22.7%) 24,830 25,551 (2.8%)
Depreciation and amortization 4,620 3,030 52.5% 15,560 11,563 34.6%
Adjustments 614 561 9.4% 4,067 3,978 2.2%
Adjusted EBITDA $12,071 $12,431 (2.9%) $44,457 $41,092 8.2%

TRONC, INC.
CONDENSED CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(In thousands)
(Unaudited)
Preliminary
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
Assets
Current Assets:
Cash $189,653 $198,349
Accounts receivable 180,679 195,519
Inventories 10,798 10,950
Prepaid expenses 22,389 12,879
Other 3,186 5,984
Total current assets 406,705 423,681
Net Properties, Plant and Equipment 107,040 67,866
Other Assets
Goodwill 121,907 122,469
Intangible assets, net 125,178 132,161
Software, net 42,793 54,565
Investments and other assets 52,284 88,024
Total other assets 342,162 397,219
Total assets $855,907 $888,766
Liabilities and Equity
Current Liabilities
Current portion of long-term debt $21,857 $21,617
Accounts payable 78,365 70,148
Other 157,376 173,122
Total current liabilities 257,598 264,887
Non-Current Liabilities
Long-term debt 331,881 349,128
Other non-current liabilities 197,266 166,870
Total non-current liabilities 529,147 515,998
Equity
Total stockholders' equity 69,162 107,881
Total liabilities and equity $855,907 $888,766

TRONC, INC.
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATIONS
(In thousands) (Unaudited)
Preliminary
Reconciliation of Net Income (Loss) to Adjusted EBITDA:
Three months ended Year Ended
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
%
Change
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
%
Change
Net income (loss) $(373) $19,416 * $5,535 $6,537 (15.3%)
Income tax expense 22,104 15,621 41.5% 31,681 18,924 67.4%
Interest expense, net 7,056 6,587 7.1% 26,481 26,703 (0.8%)
Premium on stock buyback * 6,031 *
(Gain) loss on equity investments, net 582 203 * (3,139) 690 *
Reorganization items, net 23 * 259 *
Income from operations 29,369 41,850 (29.8%) 66,589 53,113 25.4%
Depreciation and amortization 14,700 14,700 * 56,696 57,499 (1.4%)
Restructuring and transaction costs(1) 14,370 5,796 * 40,897 45,916 (10.9%)
Litigation settlement(2) 3,000 * 3,000 *
Stock-based compensation 3,949 2,424 62.9% 11,228 8,424 33.3%
Employee voluntary separation program 2,049 * 401 15,589 (97.4%)
Adjusted EBITDA $65,388 $66,819 (2.1%) $178,811 $180,541 (1.0%)

* Represents positive or negative change in excess of 100%

(1) - Restructuring and transaction costs include costs related to tronc's internal restructuring, such as severance related to the IT outsourcing efforts, charges associated with vacated space and costs related to completed and potential acquisitions.
(2) - Adjustment to litigation settlement reserve.

Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA margin

The Company defines Adjusted EBITDA as net income before equity in earnings of unconsolidated affiliates, income taxes, interest expense, other (expense) income, realized gain (loss) on investments, reorganization items, depreciation and amortization, and other items that the Company does not consider in the evaluation of ongoing operating performance. These items include stock-based compensation expense, restructuring charges, transaction expenses, and certain other charges and gains that the Company does not believe reflects the underlying business performance (including spin-related costs). Adjusted EBITDA margin is defined as Adjusted EBITDA divided by Revenue. Management believes that because Adjusted EBITDA excludes (i) certain non-cash expenses (such as depreciation, amortization, stock-based compensation, and gain/loss on equity investments) and (ii) expenses that are not reflective of the Company’s core operating results over time (such as restructuring costs, including the employee voluntary separation program and gain/losses on employee benefit plan terminations, litigation or dispute settlement charges or gains, and transaction-related costs), this measure provides investors with additional useful information to measure the Company’s financial performance, particularly with respect to changes in performance from period to period. The Company's management uses Adjusted EBITDA (a) as a measure of operating performance; (b) for planning and forecasting in future periods; and (c) in communications with the Company’s Board of Directors concerning the Company’s financial performance. In addition, Adjusted EBITDA, or a similarly calculated measure, is used as the basis for certain financial maintenance covenants that the Company is subject to in connection with certain credit facilities. Since not all companies use identical calculations, the Company's presentation of Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA margin may not be comparable to other similarly titled measures of other companies and should not be used by investors as a substitute or alternative to net income or any measure of financial performance calculated and presented in accordance with GAAP. Instead, management believes Adjusted EBITDA and Adjusted EBITDA margin should be used to supplement the Company’s financial measures derived in accordance with GAAP to provide a more complete understanding of the trends affecting the business.

Although Adjusted EBITDA is frequently used by investors and securities analysts in their evaluations of companies, Adjusted EBITDA has limitations as an analytical tool, and investors should not consider it in isolation or as a substitute for, or more meaningful than, amounts determined in accordance with GAAP. Some of the limitations to using non-GAAP measures as an analytical tool are: they do not reflect the Company’s interest income and expense, or the requirements necessary to service interest or principal payments on the Company’s debt; they do not reflect future requirements for capital expenditures or contractual commitments; and although depreciation and amortization charges are non-cash charges, the assets being depreciated and amortized will often have to be replaced in the future, and non-GAAP measures do not reflect any cash requirements for such replacements.

The Company does not provide a reconciliation of Adjusted EBITDA guidance due to the inherent difficulty in forecasting and quantifying certain amounts that are necessary for such reconciliation, including adjustments that could be made for restructuring and transaction costs, stock-based compensation amounts and other charges reflected in our reconciliation of historic numbers, the amount of which, based on historical experience, could be significant.

TRONC, INC.
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATIONS
(In thousands)
(Unaudited)
Preliminary
Reconciliation of Total Operating Expenses to Adjusted Total Operating Expenses:
Three Months Ended December 31, 2017 Three Months Ended December 25, 2016
GAAP Adjustments Adjusted GAAP Adjustments Adjusted
Compensation $154,704 $(12,203) $142,501 $143,940 $(7,340) $136,600
Newsprint and ink 27,027 (25) 27,002 26,732 26,732
Outside services 127,746 (3,621) 124,125 125,745 (2,998) 122,747
Other 81,474 (5,470) 76,004 72,455 69 72,524
Depreciation and amortization 14,700 (14,700) 14,700 (14,700)
Total operating expenses $405,651 $(36,019) $369,632 $383,572 $(24,969) $358,603


Year Ended December 31, 2017 Year Ended December 25, 2016
GAAP Adjustments Adjusted GAAP Adjustments Adjusted
Compensation $549,363 $(34,505) $514,858 $597,293 $(43,503) $553,790
Newsprint and ink 94,340 (25) 94,315 103,906 103,906
Outside services 468,044 (10,743) 457,301 494,478 (16,785) 477,693
Other 288,986 (10,253) 278,733 300,089 (9,641) 290,448
Depreciation and amortization 56,696 (56,696) 57,499 (57,499)
Total operating expenses $1,457,429 $(112,222) $1,345,207 $1,553,265 $(127,428) $1,425,837

Adjusted Total Operating Expenses

Adjusted total operating expenses consist of total operating expenses per the income statement, adjusted to exclude the impact of items listed in the Adjusted EBITDA non-GAAP reconciliation and expenses relating to The San Diego Union-Tribune. Management believes that Adjusted total operating expenses is informative to investors as it enhances the investors' overall understanding of the financial performance of the Company's business as they analyze current results compared to prior periods.

TRONC, INC.
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATIONS
(In thousands)
(Unaudited)
Preliminary
Reconciliation of Net Income (Loss) to Adjusted Net Income and Adjusted Diluted EPS:
Three months ended
December 31, 2017 December 25, 2016
Earnings Diluted
EPS
Earnings Diluted
EPS
Net income (loss) - GAAP$(373) $(0.01) $19,416 $0.53
Pre-spin tax adjustment from TCO 7,063 0.19
Adjustments to operating expenses, net of 27.8% tax:
Restructuring and transaction costs10,375 0.31 4,185 0.11
Employee voluntary separation program 1,479 0.04
Adjusted net income - Non-GAAP$10,002 $0.30 $32,143 $0.88


Year Ended
December 31, 2017 December 25, 2016
Earnings Diluted
EPS
Earnings Diluted
EPS
Net income - GAAP$5,535 $0.16 $6,537 $0.19
Premium on stock buyback6,031 0.18
Pre-spin tax adjustment from TCO 7,063 0.21
Adjustments to operating expenses, net of 27.8% tax:
Restructuring and transaction costs29,528 0.86 33,151 0.98
Gain on sale of investments(4,357) (0.13)
Employee voluntary separation program290 0.01 11,255 0.33
Adjusted net income - Non-GAAP$37,027 $1.08 $58,006 $1.71

Adjusted Net income and Adjusted Diluted EPS

Adjusted net income is defined as Net income - GAAP excluding the following adjustments: Restructuring and transaction costs and Employee voluntary separation program, net of the impact of income taxes and pre-spin allocated tax adjustments from Tribune Media Company ("TCO").

Adjusted Diluted EPS computes Adjusted net income divided by diluted weighted average shares outstanding.

Management believes Adjusted Net income and Adjusted Diluted EPS are informative to investors as they enhance investors' overall understanding of the financial performance of the Company's business as they analyze current results compared to future recurring projections.

TRONC, INC.
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATIONS
(In thousands) (Unaudited)
Reconciliation of Total Debt to Net Debt:
As of
December 31,
2017
December 25,
2016
% Change
Current portion of long-term debt $21,857 $21,617 1.1%
Long-term debt 331,881 349,128 (4.9%)
Total debt 353,738 370,745 (4.6%)
Less: Cash 189,653 198,349 (4.4%)
Net debt $164,085 $172,396 (4.8%)

Net Debt

Net Debt is defined as Total Debt less Cash. The Company's management believes that the presentation of Net Debt provides useful information to investors as management reviews Net Debt as part of its management of our overall liquidity, financial flexibility, capital structure and leverage.

Source: tronc, Inc.