Fairfax Radio sees growth despite revenue loss

Fairfax Media has reported a net profit after tax of $193.8 million for the half year ending December 31st 2013. Fairfax metropolitan radio saw growth of 2.8% whilst total revenue declined by 1.1%.

A similar story was reported across most of the company, with declining revenues in many areas being offset by declining costs from restructuring.

Fairfax Radio Chief Executive and Managing Director Greg Hywood said: “After a strong 2013 result, management worked hard to restructure the sales teams in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne during the half year. We also significantly refreshed programming line-ups, which became effective in January.

While Radio’s advertising revenue declined by 0.8% in a metro market that grew by 2.8%, we have been investing for the future and expect to see our actions translate into improved performance in the second half of the financial year.”

“Pursuit of profitability lies at the heart of our transformation program and we have demonstrated a preparedness to forego revenue if doing so will boost profitability… We will continue to make decisions on this basis in the future,” Hywood told investors.

Group revenue for continuing operations declined 7.4% to $964.7m. On a like-for-like basis revenue declined 5.5% after adjusting for an extra week’s trading in FY13. By sectors for the company, key points were:
Domain online revenues up 33%

Metropolitan Media down 9.8% (down 7.1% like-for-like)

New Zealand ($NZ) down 6.6% (down 4.3% like-for-like)

Australian Community Media down 18.5% (down 12.4% like-for-like)

Radio down 1.1%

Hywood’s presentation included the following points:


The full Fairfax investor briefing can be found on the ASX website here.