oOh!media Limited's half year profit was dragged down by weaker advertising on roadside billboards.
Underlying net profit after tax was $9 million, down 24%, in the six months to June. The statutory result was $515,000, down from $9.27 million in the same half last year.
Chief Executive Officer Brendon Cook says performance was impacted by subdued trading during the May federal election and a softer economic environment.
"This negatively affected the performance of Road in particular," he says.
Advertising revenue from big roadside billboards fell of 9% in the first half.
This format, usually driven by big brand based advertising, was adversely affected by soft media spend and the cautious marketing behaviour of major advertisers during the federal election.
Advertising spend by banks and auto companies also fell.
The company has cut its earnings guidance for the rest of the year.
Underlying EBITDA is forecast to be between $125 million and $135 million for the full year. Previous guidance was between $152 million and $162 million.
“While the recent adjustment to our earnings forecast for the year due to current market conditions is disappointing, the Company tested a number of potential scenarios for future trading and we concluded no equity raising is required, excluding the dividend reinvestment plan” says Cook.
He says market commentary by media houses and industry reports indicate sluggish major advertiser confidence across the board.
He says bookings are strengthening in September after weak July and August, with a positive outlook for the fourth quarter, tracking up 6% on same time last year.
The company declared a fully franked interim dividend of 3.5 cents a share, steady last year.
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