Macquarie Media’s profits fall by 39%, despite revenue climb

Macquarie Media’s net profit after tax and earnings before tax, interest, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) both fell by more than 30%, according to the 2018 half year figures released yesterday.

While revenue increased from $67.265m in the 2017 half year to $68.476m (2%), EBITDA fell by 32% to $9.236m as radio broadcasting licence values were written down by $34m.

Macquarie Media’s latest financial results see a massive decline in reported EBITDA and NPAT. Source: ASX

And while the company – which dominates the AM bandwidth with its hosts including Alan Jones, Ray Hadley and Neil Mitchell – still managed to post a profit, it fell to $4.859m from $7.959m in the year prior (-39%).

Costs were up 11% year on year, rising to $61.757m for the half year.

Radio licensing payments cost $6.5m this year. But redundancy payments significantly reduced, down from $697,000 to $8,000 in the first half of 2018.

The figures exclude discontinued operations, including Satellite Music Australia’s results.

Macquarie Media’s executive chairman, Russell Tate, said the results realised the “cost saving and efficiency” opportunities of the business, as well as the growth in radio revenue for the first quarter of FY18.

Tate: Optimistic about FY18

“Accordingly the outlook for the second half is quite positive and we will continue to explore new opportunities for revenue generation from our core radio output, particularly in the digital space where we will be trialling new initiatives during the second half.”

Tate added the company would conduct an “operational review” of the Talking Lifestyle format, which was introduced in Sydney on 2UE, and Magic in Melbourne and Brisbane.

“The ratings performance of these stations, particularly in Melbourne and Brisbane, has not met expectations in first half of FY18.

“The stations contributed around 7% of MML core radio revenues in HY18  and any format changes will not materially impact FY2018 earnings,” Tate said.

Following the final survey for 2017, Adam Lang, newly appointed CEO of Macquarie Media told Mumbrella there was still a lot to be done with the format.

“Brisbane and Sydney both went up a little, but we’re dealing at levels that we’re not yet satisfied with. So from our point of view we recognise some modest increases, but we really need to grow more than that and that’s all we want to do,” he said.

In the latest survey, Brisbane’s Talking Lifestyle had a cumulative audience of 24,000 while Sydney posted an audience of 164,000 and Melbourne had 48,000.


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