Seven slashes debt, looks to banks’ ad spend

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 23 : 20-Feb-19

Seven West Media has posted a 2018-19 interim underlying net profit of $91.8m, which is 7.8 per cent lower than previously. Revenue was 1.5 per cent lower at $797.4m. Seven has scaled back its full-year EBIT growth forecast to no more than five per cent at best. CEO Tim Worner says Seven was affected by the weaker advertising market, but he expects banks and insurers to increase their advertising expenditure in the wake of the Hayne royal commission. He adds that free-to-air TV is a compelling proposition for banks as they seek to rebuild trust in their brands.

CORPORATES
SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, AUSTRALIA. ROYAL COMMISSION INTO MISCONDUCT IN THE BANKING, SUPERANNUATION AND FINANCIAL SERVICES INDUSTRY, CCZ EQUITIES PTY LTD, AIRTASKER PTY LTD, HEALTHENGINE PTY LTD, SOCIETYONE AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Streaming eases pull-back in bank ads

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 18 : 8-Feb-19

Data from KPMG shows that advertising revenue for broadcast video on-demand services such as Foxtel Now and 7Plus rose 43 per cent to $61 million in the six months to December, compared to the previous corresponding period. Advertising revenue for traditional capital city free-to-air television and subscription TV fell by four per cent to $1.7 billion, with a fall in advertising by banks blamed for much of the decline.

CORPORATES
FOXTEL NOW, FOXTEL MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, KPMG AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Private equity funds size up regional titles

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 24 : 4-Feb-19

Allegro Funds, Anchorage Capital and Platinum Equity are said to be the leading contenders to acquire Nine Entertainment Company’s portfolio of regional newspapers, which it inherited via the merger with Fairfax Media. Independent expert Grant Samuel had valued Fairfax’s Australian Community Media division at $100m to $120m in 2018, and the business generates EBITDA of around $52m a year. Nine is also believed to be looking to sell Fairfax’s New Zealand business, Stuff.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN COMMUNITY MEDIA, ALLEGRO FUNDS PTY LTD, ANCHORAGE CAPITAL PARTNERS PTY LTD, PLATINUM EQUITY HOLDINGS, STUFF LIMITED, RURAL PRESS LIMITED, APOLLO GLOBAL MANAGEMENT LLC, MACQUARIE CAPITAL PTY LTD, TPG CAPITAL LP, GRANT SAMUEL AND ASSOCIATES PTY LTD, JEFFERIES AND COMPANY, HT&E LIMITED – ASX HT1, NZME LIMITED – ASX NZM, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN

Mogul Gordon grabs shares to increase stake in Nine

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 16 : 10-Jan-19

Australian businessman Bruce Gordon has lifted his direct stake in Nine Entertainment Company from 7.6 per cent to 8.9 per cent. Gordon has a total economic interest in Nine of about 13.4 per cent when a 4.5 per cent stake held via a cash-settled share swap is taken into account. Gordon’s stake in Nine had been diluted by its merger with Fairfax Media.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED, BIRKETU PTY LTD, DEUTSCHE BANK AG, APOLLO GLOBAL MANAGEMENT LLC

Sign of the times as Fairfax goes

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 13 & 14 : 9-Jan-19

Nine Entertainment Company has confirmed that it is seeking a buyer for Fairfax Media’s events business, which has been valued at between $24m and $32m by Macquarie Group. Meanwhile, Nine has begun the process of phasing out the Fairfax Media brand; workers have used black plastic sheeting to cover the Fairfax signage on the newspaper publisher’s headquarters in the Sydney suburb of Pyrmont. Some Fairfax staff were recently relocated to Nine’s offices in the Sydney CBD in the wake of the $4.2bn merger.

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NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED, LOTUS DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, EURO PROPERTIES, SYDNEY CITY COUNCIL, SPORTS MEDIA AND ENTERTAINMENT 360, NINE LIVE PTY LTD, AFFINITY EQUITY PARTNERS (AUSTRALIA) PTY LTD, GOOGLE AUSTRALIA PTY LTD

Karl exits, Nine eyes all-women Today

Original article by Nick Tabakoff
The Australian – Page: 1 & 5 : 20-Dec-18

The Nine Network is believed to be considering a major revamp of its ‘Today’ breakfast show in 2019, after sacking co-host Karl Stefanovic. Options that are under consideration are said to include having all on-air roles filled by women in order to boost the show’s appeal to female viewers. There is speculation that several other ‘Today’ presenters will be dropped, although they are expected to take on other roles at Nine. The network also recently terminated the services of Peter Stefanovic.

CORPORATES
NINE NETWORK AUSTRALIA LIMITED, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC

Ten surrenders but BOSS hasn’t left court

Original article by Nick Tabakoff
The Australian – Page: 19 : 11-Dec-18

Nine Entertainment Company may still proceed with legal action over the rebranding of the Ten Network’s digital channel despite a backdown by the broadcaster. Ten has advised that its 10 Boss channel will be rebadged as 10 Bold after Nine claimed that its logo was too similar to the "Boss" magazine supplement of "The Australian Financial Review". Nine has issued a statement in which it notes that the trademark dispute is still before the courts.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED, CBS CORPORATION, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN

Nine holds its ground over Singo buyout

Original article by Nick Tabakoff
The Australian – Page: 25 & 27 : 10-Dec-18

Nine CEO Hugh Marks says he has held talks with advertising industry veteran John Singleton about buying his 32 per cent stake in Macquarie Media. However, Marks has dismissed speculation that Nine will pay at least $2 per share to take full ownership of Macquarie in the wake of the merger with Fairfax Media. Marks also says Nine is committed to retaining the print editions of Fairfax’s key mastheads. He adds that the websites of Fairfax newspapers are likely to feature more of Nine’s video content, but Fairfax content will in turn largely continue to be exclusive.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN, 2GB, 3AW SOUTHERN CROSS RADIO PTY LTD, RADIO 4BC BRISBANE PTY LTD, DOMAIN HILL PROPERTY GROUP PTY LTD, DELOITTE TOUCHE TOHMATSU LIMITED

Macquarie Media shares jump as Nine confirms mop-up talks

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich, Bridget Carter
The Australian – Page: 19 : 6-Dec-18

Nine Entertainment Company has advised that it has held preliminary talks about moving to full ownership of Macquarie Media when the merger with Fairfax Media is completed. The enlarged Nine will have a 54.5 per cent stake in the radio stations owner, ahead of advertising industry veteran John Singleton with a 32 per cent stake. Shares in Macquarie rose 12.6 per cent to $2.06 on 5 December. Media reports have suggested that Nine is likely to offer around $2 per share for Macquarie.

CORPORATES
NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, MACQUARIE MEDIA LIMITED – ASX MRN, WILSON ASSET MANAGEMENT, HADIAC PTY LTD, 2GB, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, DOMAIN HOLDINGS AUSTRALIA LIMITED – ASX DHA, 9NOW

Ten faces uphill task against Netflix, Stan

Original article by Lilly Vitorovich
The Australian – Page: 22 : 5-Dec-18

US media giant CBS Corporation has officially launched its subscription video-on-demand service in Australia. Consumers will be offered a one-month free trial of 10 All Access, which will then cost $9.99 per month. It will provide advertising-free access to a library of 7,000 titles from CBS and the Ten Network. However, rival SVOD service Stan has an exclusive agreement for content from CBS-owned Showtime. Brian Han of Morningstar says gaining a foothold in the local market will be a challenge for 10 All Access.

CORPORATES
CBS CORPORATION, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, 10 ALL ACCESS, STAN ENTERTAINMENT PTY LTD, NETFLIX INCORPORATED, MORNINGSTAR PTY LTD, SHOWTIME, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FOXTEL NOW, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, SPECIAL BROADCASTING SERVICE (SBS), NINE NETWORK AUSTRALIA LIMITED, SEVEN NETWORK LIMITED