Harte-Hanks reports 8% Q1 revenue decrease

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Direct marketing agency Harte-Hanks reported an 8% year-over-year decrease in its first-quarter revenues. The company said it was the smallest quarterly revenue decline since Q3 2008. Total Q1 revenues were $200.2 million. Net income was up more than 50% year-over-year to $10.8 million in Q1 2009.

Direct marketing revenues declined 8.4%, and operating income declined by 12.3%.

Larry Franklin, chairman, president and CEO of Harte-Hanks, attributed the net income growth to the economic recovery and an increase in spending by two major clients, whom he would not name.

“The rate of decline was less each month, which reflects as improving economic environment,” he said during the earnings conference call. “The tone of the economic marketplace has improved, but our customers are still being cautious.”

Harte-Hanks Shoppers, the portion of the business that owns and managers shopper destinations including PennySaverUSA.com and TheFlyer.com, saw revenue decrease 7.3% in the first quarter compared to the same period of 2009. Franklin said it is still a challenging business area because of the recession.

During the last quarter, Harte-Hanks invested in new hires, as well as in technology with a focus on digital tools, such as mobile and social media.

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