Nine’s broadcast division reports 35% dip in EOFY earnings

Former Assistant Editor
High Marks

Nine has shared financial results for the year ending June 30, reporting overall revenue of $2.2 billion and a $575m loss, amid the coronavirus pandemic with group earnings down 16%.

Looking at Nine’s broadcast division, which includes Nine, 9Now and Nine Radio (formerly Macquarie Media), EBITDA was reported at $197 million on revenues of $1.1 billion for the year.

Nine Radio reported EBITDA of $10m, or $6m pre AASB 16.

Overall the broadcast businesses were among the most impacted by COVID and delivered earnings of $197.3m (down 35% on a like for like basis),” Nine CEO Hugh Marks told staff.

Nine completed its acquisition of Macquarie Media in November and rebranded to Nine Radio in January, moving quickly to make a number of changes both on and off the air.

Nine’s metro radio ad revenue declined by 16% in the first half, and 29% in the second half, with full-year costs declining by 8% or $8 million.

“From a content point of view, the 9Network continues to be a clear leader in terms of ratings while radio has refreshed its line up in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane and the sales team are working hard to improve its share of the radio market,” Marks said.

Nine noted that since taking over Macquarie, it has made significant changes to personnel, consolidated back-office functions, sales and news.

The network expects radio to turnaround, as advertisers return and the cost base is reset.

“On COVID more broadly we were quick to respond when the markets turned, transitioning the majority of our work-force to `work at home’ with minimal interruption,” Marks said.

“We will continue to drive growth in our increasingly prominent digital businesses while, at the same time, maximizing the performance of our traditional media assets.

“We are confident that this current period of adversity will only make us stronger.

“We believe we have the right strategy, assets and people, as well as a strong balance sheet, to ensure Nine’s position at the forefront of the media sector for many years to come.”

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