SCA revenues tumble, as digital assets indicate growth pathway

• Audio remains an attractive platform for audiences and advertisers

Southern Cross Media Group (SCA) yesterday announced its financial results for the six months ended 31 December 2019. Revenues were down 8.2% year-on-year for the period with earnings of $62.2m revealed. An interim fully franked dividend of 2.75 cents per share will be paid on 16 April 2020.

Headline achievements listed for the period include:

• SCA’s sales teams performed strongly in a weak media environment. The Boomtown industry trade marketing initiative saw national regional advertising revenues outperform metro markets.

• SCA’s digital audio revenues grew 140% compared to the prior corresponding period. This was led by PodcastOne Australia – Australia’s leading premium podcast network – and SCA’s sales representation for SoundCloud.

Southern Cross Austereo CEO, Grant Blackley, said:

“SCA is Australia’s largest audio group, owning and operating 96 FM, AM and DAB+ radio stations around Australia. Audio remains an attractive platform for audiences and advertisers and is well- positioned to benefit from improvements in media markets. Total average audiences for metro radio grew in 2019, while average time spent listening remained stable.

“Consumption of digital audio is growing strongly, providing opportunities for growing revenue through premium addressable advertising. With an aggregated commercial reach of over

three million monthly users, SCA offers advertisers scaled and simple solutions to target consumer interests, behaviours and passions.

“PodcastOne Australia continues to be Australia’s leading commercial podcast network, providing advertisers with premium access to audiences who are highly engaged with our creators and their areas of interest. SCA’s catch-up radio podcasts are the BVOD of radio, with more than 450,000 signed-in unique and addressable users. In addition, SCA enjoys exclusive Australian representation of SoundCloud – an open, digital audio platform fostering new talent and connecting advertisers to younger fans of new and emerging music and culture.

“SCA’s Television business continued to benefit from strategic decisions in recent years to outsource non-core functions to create a more efficient cost base. Underlying expenses reduced by 6%, cushioning the impact of lower spending by advertisers.

“SCA’s Audio and Television activities in regional markets also benefited from the Boomtown industry marketing campaign. SCA and other regional media companies will continue to invest in and mature Boomtown in the year ahead.

See also:
SCA radio & TV revenue tumbles 8% as advertisers pull back
• Grant Blackley on outlook, radio brands, TV profit & 2Day strategy

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