Nine gives trading update at 2021 Annual General Meeting


• Nine’s H2 FY22 Metro Free To Air ad revenue will be up by more than 6%

The Nine Annual General Meeting was held on November 11th, and included a trading update of the company’s platforms.

Nine Network and the main channel are set to be number one amongst 16-39s, 25-54s, and grocery buyers with children demographics. This comes off the back of expectations that Nine’s H2 FY22 Metro Free To Air ad revenue will be up by more than 6%. This result means that Nine will offset Covid-releated production costs for around $5 million. 

For 9Now, revenue in the first half is expected to be up by more than 45%, boosted by the continued growth of love streaming.

See More: ​​Hamish Turner on why Nine is the #1 network in 2021

Audiences have continued tuning their dials to Nine Radio this year, with Nine’s talk network achieving its best ever results in recent radio ratings surveys. 

With people looking for entertainment in lockdown, Stan subscriber numbers have continued to climb, and Stan Sport has been given a boost by the current UEFA season.

In the publishing division, growth of Nine’s titles are being pushed by subscription and licensing.  As it stands, Nine is expecting publishing EBITDA in FY22 to grow by $40-45 million.

Finally, Domain – who held their AGM last week – saw an 18% rise in digital revenue year on year. As lockdowns ease, Domain is expected to see major growth in the Spring selling season.

In the subsequent media call after the AGM, when asked about the profitability of Nine’s streaming service Stan, Nine Chairman Peter Costello said that the streaming service should be treated like a pure technology business when assessing results.

Peter Costello and Mike Sneesby

“You shouldn’t be surprised that you keep reinvesting and reinvesting and reinvesting because with a growth business, you’re trying to build share. You’re not trying to take short term property, you’re trying to build a share.”

Costello also said that Stan is in a very unusual situation in that it is in fact profitable.

“The unusual thing is that we’re actually in a profit instead. And so, you sit down and you say, well, this is a great business. It’s growing well, we’re going to go into more investment consequence. Your profit will fall in the short term, but your revenues will build in the long term.”

When asked about possible supply chain issues in regards to manufacturing newspapers, CEO Mike Sneesby said that he wasn’t concerned.

“I don’t see any major issues in the supply chain which will be material, certainly to our broader publishing business, our broader business. As you would have heard today, with that continued shift into profitability delivered from digital, it further minimises any risk in that part of the business.”

Costello also added that Nine is encouraging everyone to take up some type of online subscription. 

“We made no secret that it’s our plan to have more people on digital subscriptions than buying the printed paper. It doesn’t mean we want to say less people buy the printed paper, it’s just that we want to see more people take digital subscriptions. We’re at about that tipping point now where certainly the take up in the business is all digital, and we intend to drive that further. Our future will be in the publishing business. Our future will be digital subscriptions and to a lesser degree digital advertising.”

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