Could HT&E be looking at selling ARN?
HT&E’s chairman Peter Cosgrove could be looking to break up ARN and outdoor advertising company Adshel.
The Australian Financial Review reports that Cosgrove is open to advice from newly appointed banking advisers Credit Suisse and CLSA, and at HT&E’s AGM on Monday he said he would await the recommendation from the new advisers.
As a result, HT&E could sell off either Adshel or ARN, complete an all of business sale, or decide not to sell either.
“Selling one asset, or the whole company, or how it works without one asset, that’s part of the brief, that’s what we’re looking for,” Cosgrove said.
“We have appointed Credit Suisse and CSLA. Let them do their work, that’s what we pay them for.”
Industry experts value ARN’s radio assets at somewhere in the vicinity of $500 million and $800 million.
During that same meeting, HT&E CEO Ciaran Davis took the opportunity to highlight the strong performance of ARN, as well as the growth of radio as a medium on the whole.
“Radio is a fantastic industry that remains a growth platform, continuing to prove itself a robust and resilient medium,” he said.
Davis says that ARN finished the year well despite a challenging first half, which saw full-year revenue down only $1.4 million compared to nearly $7 million in the first half.
He also highlighted the regaining of its #1 ratings position in August, adding: “Revenue performance reflected these improved ratings”.