Catalano not working with Gordon

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 17 & 20 : 11-Dec-19

Australian Community Media’s Antony Catalano says he is not working with WIN Corporation owner Bruce Gordon to block Seven West Media’s takeover bid for Prime Media Group. Their combined stake in Prime is sufficient to prevent Seven from reaching the 75 per cent acceptances threshold to complete the deal. Catalano says that himself and Gordon seem to be of the shared view that the Seven offer does not represent good value for Prime’s shareholders. Both have stressed the need for further changes to Australia’s media ownership laws.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA, WIN CORPORATION PTY LTD

Gordon, Catalano block Seven West bid for Prime

Original article by Leo Shanahan, Nick Tabakoff, Zoe Samios
The Australian – Page: 17 & 28 : 10-Dec-19

Seven West Media has offered a fully franked special dividend of $0.03 per share for regional affiliate Prime Media Group, in addition to the initial offer of 0.4582 of its shares. However, two of Prime’s biggest shareholders – WIN Corporation owner Bruce Gordon and Australian Community Media’s Antony Catalano – will oppose the bid. The former has stated that Australia’s outdated media ownership laws have stymied rival bids for Prime, while Catalano has reiterated his interest in acquiring Prime in order to build ACM into a diversified regional media group.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, WIN CORPORATION PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA

Seven, Prime buff up terms of merger deal

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 17 : 9-Dec-19

Seven West Media and regional affiliate Prime Media Group have declined to comment on speculation that investors may be offered a special dividend to make their proposed merger more attractive. Seven’s offer values Prime at between $0.183 and $0.206 per share, but an independent expert’s report has valued Prime at between $0.21 and $0.24 per share. Paying a cash dividend and utilising Prime’s franking credits would lift the bid to a range that is closer to this valuation.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, LONERGAN EDWARDS AND ASSOCIATES LIMITED, WIN CORPORATION PTY LTD, BIRKETU PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA, REGAL FUNDS MANAGEMENT PTY LTD

2020 visions: big calls for new year

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 30 & 31 : 9-Dec-19

The CEOs of Australian media, digital media and advertising groups have shared their views on the outlook for their company in 2020 and the media sector in general. Bauer Media Australia CEO Brendon Hill says the deal to acquire Pacific Magazines will increase the publisher’s stability and allow it to increase its focus on the creation of compelling branded content, while Foxtel CEO Patrick Delaney says the pay-TV group’s large customer base will be its biggest advantage in 2020. Southern Cross Media Group CEO Grant Blackley says factors such as weak consumer sentiment and its flow-on effect on the advertising market will be the biggest challenge facing his company in 2020.

CORPORATES
BAUER MEDIA AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, SOUTHERN CROSS MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX SXL, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA, SEEK LIMITED – ASX SEK, OOH!MEDIA LIMITED – ASX OML, CARSALES.COM LIMITED – ASX CAR, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, HT&E LIMITED – ASX HT1, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, DOMAIN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX DHA, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, GOOGLE AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, FACEBOOK AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, TWITTER AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS PTY LTD, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, REA GROUP LIMITED – ASX REA, FETCHTV PTY LTD, JC DECAUX AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Seven merger a matter of survival for Prime

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 20 : 22-Nov-19

Prime Media Group chairman John Hartigan says the federal government is not acting quickly enough on reforms that will allow consolidation in the media sector. He has warned that Seven West Media’s takeover bid is crucial for the survival of both Prime and regional journalism. Australian Community Media’s executive chairman Antony Catalano has queried this claim, arguing that Prime should therefore have undertaken a formal sale process to allow other potential buyers to make an offer.

CORPORATES
PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA

Prime offer too low: Catalano

Original article by John Stensholt
The Australian – Page: 19 : 21-Nov-19

Businessman Antony Catalano says Seven West Media’s takeover offer for regional affiliate Prime Media Group is close to fair value, but he has urged Seven to increase the offer to make it both "fair and reasonable". An independent expert’s report has concluded that the $63m bid is "not fair but reasonable". Catalano and Alex Waislitz bought Australian Community Media earlier in 2019. Waislitz says there is potential for Prime to share newsroom and advertising resources with ACM, and he has urged Prime shareholders to consider alternatives to the Seven deal.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, THORNEY OPPORTUNITIES LIMITED – ASX TOP, THORNEY TECHNOLOGIES LIMITED – ASX TEK

Mixed messages on Prime-Seven merger

Original article by Zoe Samios
The Australian – Page: 25 : 18-Nov-19

An independent expert’s report from Lonergan Edwards & Associates has backed Seven West Media’s takeover bid for regional affiliate Prime Media Group. The firm has concluded that the deal is ‘not fair but reasonable’, noting that Prime shareholders would gain exposure to a much larger and more diverse media company. Lonergan adds that the deal is in the best interests of Prime shareholders in the absence of a better offer. Seven estimates that the merger will generate annual cost synergies of about $11m.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WENTWORTH, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, LONERGAN EDWARDS AND ASSOCIATES LIMITED, WIN CORPORATION PTY LTD

Regulate digital platforms: Seven

Original article by Zoe Samios
The Australian – Page: 19 : 14-Nov-19

Seven West Media expects the metropolitan TV market to record single-digit growth in advertising revenue in 2019-20. CEO James Warburton has told the group’s annual meeting that the advertising market is likely to remain weak during the December quarter, noting that Seven’s revenue share was 39 per cent in the first quarter. Meanwhile, chairman Kerry Stokes has called for greater regulation of digital giants such as Google and Facebook, including the implementation of all recommendations arising from the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission’s inquiry into digital platforms.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, PRIME MEDIA GROUP LIMITED – ASX PRT, PACIFIC MAGAZINES PTY LTD, REDWAVE MEDIA LIMITED

Nine feels squeeze of ad market

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 17 & 24 : 13-Nov-19

Nine Entertainment Company has downgraded its underlying earnings growth forecast for 2019-20 due to challenging conditions in the advertising market. CEO Hugh Marks has told the group’s AGM that there was a 6.4 per cent decline in the metropolitan free-to-air TV advertising market in the first quarter, and the outlook has not improved in the second quarter. Meanwhile, Nine chairman Peter Costello has called for digital platforms to be subject to the same regulations as traditional media companies.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN, 2GB, RADIO 4BC BRISBANE PTY LTD, GOOGLE INCORPORATED, FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, WALT DISNEY COMPANY

King Karl’s cut-price rescue bid

Original article by Leo Shanahan, Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 23 & 25 : 11-Nov-19

Clemenger BBDO Sydney CEO Peter Bosilkovski says the return of Karl Stefanovic should generate renewed interest in Nine’s ‘Today’ show, but he adds that the bold move may not necessarily result in a sustained ratings boost. Nine has confirmed that Stefanovic and Allison Langdon will co-host the breakfast show in 2020, a year after the former was sacked. Ratings have slumped in 2019, with new hosts Georgie Gardner and Deb Knight failing to resonate with viewers. Gardner responded to Stefanovic’s appointment by quitting the ‘Today’ show, effective immediately.

CORPORATES
NINE NETWORK AUSTRALIA LIMITED, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, CLEMENGER BBDO (SYDNEY) PTY LTD, SPINACH ADVERTISING PTY LTD, IPG MEDIABRANDS, VIZEUM, OZTAM PTY LTD