19.3 C
Byron Shire
April 14, 2024

APN puts regional newspapers up for sale

Latest News

Bangalow retaining wall damage

The wall supporting the western end of Deacon Street has failed – opposite the Roman Catholic Church. Fortunately, this...

Other News

Early childhood education trial for Kyogle and Federal

Working families in Kyogle and Federal Village are set to get more access to early childhood education and care including new programs.

Less parking more drainage say New Brighton residents

Bad weather on the weekend only served to highlight an ongoing drainage problem in New Brighton, with residents incredulous at Council’s plan to create dozens of new car parking spaces, yet they can’t, or won’t, fix the drainage problem.

Share the love cactus

Want to experience fresh, new music? A new local band has germinated from the fertile artistic soils of the Northern Rivers. Hashimoto’s Cactus is the lovechild of Stephen Lovelight, who is one of the members of the Round Mountain Girls.

Rains, drains, floods

The ABC news and Guardian recently published reports of the potential return of La Niña in 2024 bringing similar...

Aid workers killed

I along with the Israeli and Jewish community in general mourn with the rest of the world for the...

Weighing in on Gaza and Israel

I’ve hesitated to weigh in on the ongoing debate about Gaza and Israel, but Michal Schiff’s pain over the...

The owner of The Northern Star and other local newspapers including Byron Shire News, Tweed Daily News Lismore Echo and Ballina Advocate has put them on the market, saying they are dragging the company down.

They join more than 100 regional newspapers and websites in Queensland and northern NSW that are are up for sale as their owner says it no longer wants to pour money into them.

APN News & Media says it is in talks about the divestment of its Australian Regional Media (ARM) business, which reaches an audience of more than 1.5 million between Mackay and Coffs Harbour.

ARM’s earnings dropped 27 per cent in calendar 2015, despite millions in cost cuts and growth in digital subscriptions beginning to replace the declining newspaper audience.

‘Further investment in this business is now inconsistent with APN’s long term ambitions and we have commenced the process to divest the business,’ APN chief executive Ciaran Davis said.

According to industry publication TheNewspaperWorks APN was asked after its results presentation, whether News Corp Australia was the only potential purchaser of the mastheads and how APN would ensure it was not disadvantaged in the sales process by News’ investment in the company. (News holds a 15 per cent strategic stake in APN.)

‘In response APN said it was talking to a number of parties, and it was too early for a price guide,’ TheNewspaperWorks reported.

Byron Shire Echo and Echonetdaily general manager Simon Haslam said, ‘This just reinforces the point that Rupert Murdoch is calling the shots at APN.’

Mr Haslam added, ‘On behalf of The Echo, I’m happy to offer to run free classifieds for APN to help them in their search for an alternative purchaser, so Byron shire is not further exposed to News Ltd, as Murdoch’s ownership increases to 100 per cent of the Byron News and Northern Star.’

$10 million loss

A $51 million cut to the value of APN’s regional newspaper mastheads dragged the company to a loss of $10 million for 2015.

APN may also end up selling its New Zealand newspaper, radio and magazine business, which is its second biggest earner.

Plans to list NZME on the share market have been scrapped because of falling advertising spending, and APN said it is now considering its options for the business.

The company wants to focus on growth in its more successful businesses, the Australian Radio Network and outdoor advertising group Adshel.

Radio earnings rose 25 per cent in 2015, as Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O drove ratings success at KIIS, while its Pure Gold network also rated well in Sydney and Melbourne.

Mr Davis said the Australian radio market was up five per cent in January, with ARN continuing to take market share.

The network wants to grow its younger audience, with investment in mobile, video and social platforms, such as the iHeartRadio app.

Adshel’s earnings rose four per cent in 2015 as it launched digital billboards at bus stops.

APN shares were up 2.5 cents at 52.5 cents.

APN plunges into the red

* Net loss of $10.2m vs $11.5m net profit

* Revenue flat at $850m

* No dividend, unchanged

– with AAP

Echonetdaily and the Byron Shire Echo remain the only independent, wholly locally owned news publications in the northern rivers.


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

We wonder why

Living in Byron Shire the majority of people continue to ask why is this organisation continuously letting this community down as far as representing...

Aid workers killed

I along with the Israeli and Jewish community in general mourn with the rest of the world for the tragic loss of the seven...

Rains, drains, floods

The ABC news and Guardian recently published reports of the potential return of La Niña in 2024 bringing similar rain to 2022. We just experienced...

Peace

Elimination by people-power voting is necessary to remove dictators from Russia, Israel, China, Iran, wannabe (again!) North Korea, to avoid what is heading toward...