ARN reaffirms commitment to SCA takeover bid in annual report

ARN Media has reaffirmed its commitment to the proposed SCA acquisition, providing an update in its annual report.

ARN – which partnered with investment firm Anchorage Capital Partners to form a consortium to bid for SCA – says “The Consortium remains committed to delivering a clear, compelling and certain transaction for SCA shareholders in a timely and efficient manner, unlocking material value for both ARN and SCA shareholders.”

Anchorage says it has been actively participating in the due diligence process.

ARN reportedly hopes to secure a binding transaction as early as next month.

ARN detailed its commercial rationale, which includes enhancing ARN’s digital audio assets as well as its metro radio network across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.

It says this would be anchored by KIIS and Triple M brands delivering a complementary offering in each location, as well as a significantly enhanced regional offering.

ARN reported a 22% decline in net profits after tax to $29.5m, as well as a 23% rise in net debt to $75.1m.

ARN CEO Ciaran Davis promised to identify and deliver further efficiencies across the company.

As far as its trading outlook goes, the network reports a positive start to the year, with January metro, regional and digital revenues all up on the prior comparative period.

ARN says its operational performance has been strong against a backdrop of reduced advertising spend, in a highly competitive market.

It also notes that its digital audience is expanding.

“We continue to grow our audiences across broadcast radio, digital audio streaming and podcasting through a considered content strategy that delivers Australia’s most popular content from world class talent, coupled with a distribution strategy that delivers this content everywhere audiences seek it.”

Also highlighted in the report were the contracts of two top rating Breakfast shows in Sydney and Melbourne being extended for significant periods, with Kyle & Jackie O expected to drive commercial opportunity when they go to air in Melbourne.

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