Southern Cross Austereo: no deal for NZ

Southern Cross Austereo’s expansion plans into New Zealand have seemingly fallen through, after months of protracted negotiations.

As per the Australian Financial Review, SCA had been involved in discussions with Oaktree Capital Management since April to acquire its MediaWorks radio assets.

Operating in 23 markets across New Zealand, its radio stable includes The Edge, The Sound, The Breeze and Magic.

It looked like a match made in heaven. SCA is a radio heavyweight and MediaWorks radio assets are strong and profitable. So what went wrong?

It comes down to TV.

Whilst initially happy to sell off the radio network, the US private equity firm had a change of heart and wanted to include its TV assets in any sale.

Unfortunately, that was a deal breaker for SCA.

Having already sold its NSW TV business to the WIN Corporation and handed control of local TV news bulletins in other markets to affiliate partner Nine Entertainment, Southern Cross Austereo wasn’t about to take on another TV network.

Negotiations have now broken off, leaving SCA to look elsewhere for expansion options.

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