Stand by for a bailout of the Australian media sector. A decision on whether a recapitalisation will happen at oOh!media is due to be known today while shares of national radio and regional TV group, Southern Cross Media have collapsed.
Simon Conn and Marc Whittaker from the IML Small Caps team discuss three of their favourite small to mid-cap stocks and the attributes these companies possess that make them believe they will do well for investors in the next 3 to 5 years.
The listed Australian media sector took a hammering yesterday when the best performed of the handful of companies – radio and regional TV operator, South Cross Austereo warned of a sharp slowdown in revenue in the first months of 2019-20.
Southern Cross Austereo probably wins the prize for best in class in the ASX’s struggling media sector. It and Fairfax reported fairly solid net profits for the year to June 30, unlike rivals such as Nine Entertainment (see separate story) with a impairment driven loss, Seven West Media (ditto), and losses for News Corp (impairment again) and Foxtel a lower net income and losses on the Ten investment and Presto streaming service that was closed in the year.
While ad markets have continued to be choppy across broader media, Macquarie was surprised by the extent of Southern Cross' guidance downgrade. Channel checks reveal weakness is across the board, not just in any one sector. The broker has reassessed its general media assumptions.
Southern Cross Media's FY19 result was in line with the broker. Management did not provide guidance but reports early weakness in metro radio markets, which it expects should turn around in September, and lower costs thanks to declining TV advertising revenue.