ITV, Britain’s main commercial TV broadcaster and production group has sent 800 staff - 15% of its workforce on leave as ad revenue tanks in the wake of lockdowns and social distancing rules designed to slow the spread of COVID-19 and bring it under control.
More gloom from the embattled media sector with regional free to air broadcaster, Prime Media Group (PRT) forecasting its December half-year net profit will come in between $15.3 million and $16.3 million, little changed from what the company earned in the December 2015 half.
Five months ago, Macquarie slashed earnings forecasts and pulled back its recommendation to Underperform as the recovery in earnings was likely to occur at a slower pace. As the analysts started to look ahead of the upcoming FY10 release, they discovered a different dynamic. All of a sudden, earnings forecasts were found as probably too low, so they have been raised. FY10 EPS estimate lifted by 13%, FY11 increased by 2%.
The company intends to raise up to a combined $110m at 48c per share through a 10 for 7 renounceable offer raising up to $88 million and a placement to major shareholder Seven ((SEV)) raising approximately $22m. While the broker notes the raising reduces the risk of a covenant breach, it also comes at a price, with estimated FY10 EPS dilution of up to 54% in the event that the full $110m is raised. Sector: Media.