Nine Entertainment sells stake in Southern Cross Media

Nine Entertainment Co. has sold its stake in Southern Cross Media Group for $1.54 per share.


The company has sold its entire 9.99% stake in the company after acquiring it in March this year at a price of $1.15 per share.

The sale follows on from the two companies entering into a five-year regional television affiliate agreement commencing on July 1.

Hugh Marks, Nine CEO, said in a statement to the ASX: “Our relationship with Southern Cross has never been better. The early performance of our new affiliate agreement has surpassed our expectations, and we look forward to a long and prosperous relationship between our two companies.”

The proceeds from the sale will provide Nine with “increased flexibility in executing its strategy in the future”.

Prior to the share markets opening today, Nine’s share price was $0.98, giving the company a market capitalisation of $849.59m, while Southern Cross Media Group (ASX: SXL) had a share price of $1.68 giving the company a market capitalisation of $1.30b.

Earlier this week Nine changed its position on media reform, calling for any changes to be “deferred” until licence fees have been cut.

A one-page submission to the reconvened government inquiry into changing some media ownership rules saw Nine’s CEO Hugh Marks describe licence fees  – money paid by commercial, free-to-air broadcasters to the government in return for public airwaves – as “onerous and unfair”.

Southern Cross declined to comment.


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