Seven delivers blow to Prime Media board amid further warnings of ad revenue declines

Prime MediaSeven Group Holdings has used its major shareholding in regional TV network Prime Media to help deliver a “strike” against its management remuneration report.

The move comes amid growing tensions between the affiliate stations with Prime lobbying hard for media reform and Seven actively opposing any change in the legislative framework government the broadcast media. 

It also came on a day when shareholders were again warned of a slump in advertising revenues, which were down 6.9 per cent in July and August and down 7.9 per cent in September. 

Hartigan: the next report will meet the expectations of shareholders

Hartigan: the next report will meet the expectations of shareholders

In his address to shareholders Prime chairman John Hartigan acknowledged shareholder anger about a lack of transparency in the remuneration report: “Let me assure you that the board recognises the need to make improvements to the remuneration report and the way remuneration disclosures are made.

“Your directors have listened to the advice and feedback and we will be working with our independent advisors to ensure the next remuneration report…. meets the expectations of shareholders and governance advisors.”

A strike is reached if a quarter more shareholders vote against the company’s remuneration report. A second strike at next year’s AGM would force the re-election of the entire board.

Today 48 per cent of Prime’s shareholders voted against the company’s disclosures on the remuneration of senior executives.

Hartigan also used the AGM to again push for the government to act on media reform.

“Let me address that (issue) head on: we see things more holistically, and it is the view of your board that any changes to media ownership and control laws open up a range of opportunities, and the potential for strategic alliances, that will enable the company to achieve scale and strengthen our position.”

Seven Group Holdings owns 11.4 per cent of Prime Media holdings, but has indicated that were media laws to change it would not want to buy its regional affiliate.

Shares in Prime Media closed down 1.87 per cent at $0.52 cents.

Nic Christensen 


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