Media Wrap: Nine's ready to buy; Ten's AFL dreams; Regionals preach reform; Dire warnings for TV

James McGrath
By James McGrath | 20 April 2015

Nine to go on acquisition drive

Nine's chief executive officer, David Gyngell, says he's ready to go hunting for deals in the wake of the Nine Live sale, saying media assets are undervalued by the market. Speaking to The Australian, he said the $640 million sale of Nine Live to private equity investors gave it a war chest to play with. “I definitely believe media companies are more valuable than a lot of the outside world [does],” Gyngell said.

Big Bash appetite fuels Ten's AFL dreams

The success of the Big Bash League has convinced Ten to make a play for the AFL rights, despite its somewhat cash-poor position. The Australian Financial Review has reported Ten is making a play for the rights, despite having little cash compared with its main free-to-air rival for the rights, Seven. It is thought that if Ten is successful in obtaining some rights to the AFL, it would have until November 2016 to make its first payment, giving it some breathing room.

Regionals preach on media reform

Representatives from regional media companies such as Prime Media Group and WIN have lobbied the Federal Government to relax ownership laws, or face regional services being cut. The stark warnings, published in The Australian, come at a time when political heat is being put on PM Tony Abbott from media owners seeking reform to reach rules and cross-ownership laws. The representatives warned that local news bulletins are at risk due to a declining ad market for regional TV.

The year the model breaks

Chief investment officer for GroupM in Australia, Danny Bass, has labelled the next two years as the years the “model breaks” for free-to-air TV stations. Speaking with the Australian Financial Review, he said that media agencies held the cards in the latest round of negotiations. “We've been saying for a number of years that there's a point in time the TV model as we know it breaks and a number of market forces this year tell us it's this year,” Bass was quoted as saying. Chief Revenue Officer for Seven West Media Kurt Burnette fired back, saying “knock yourself out” to agencies which wanted to slash TV budgets this year.

Regional radio cuts

Fairfax Radio has slashed up to 50 jobs over the past two weeks, according to The Australian, as the axe falls following the merger with Macquarie Radio.

Twitter turns on ads

Twitter is set to switch on its programmatic mobile ad network, MoPub, in Australia next month, according to The Australian, with users set to see two- or three-second ads.


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