Ten Network has warned that its share of the television advertising market will not improve in the near term as it raises $200 million from shareholders to bolster its balance sheet and invest in programming.
Television revenue for the third quarter was down by 12 per cent compared to the prior corresponding period and television revenue for the nine months to May was down 12 per cent, the company said. Meanwhile, advertising markets continue to be soft with very little near term visibility on revenue for July and August.
Nonetheless, Ten managing director and chief executive officer James Warburton, said the company’s turnaround strategy was well under way.
“We have reset our cost base, refocused our News strategy, relaunched ONE and rebuilt the executive team,” he said in a statement. “Our focus is now on renewing our content offering to build audience share and revenue. In a strong endorsement of our turnaround strategy, four of our major shareholders accounting for approximately 43 per cent of the shareholder register have committed to take up their entitlements in the entitlement offer. Those shareholders are interests associated with Bruce Gordon, Lachlan Murdoch, James Packer and Gina Rinehart.”
Ten’s ratings woes have failed to improve this year despite the return of its popular MasterChef series. Its year-to-date ratings share has declined 2.5 per cent to 25.1 per cent, while it has lost 2.7 per cent and 2.4 per cent share across the key 18-49 and 25-54 categories, where it generates the majority of its ad revenues, according to Deutsche Bank analysts.
Nine's The Voice has been the strongest performer this year, attracting 2.3 million viewers on average (albeit falling to 1.93 million recently).
The full Ten Network statement and more information about the capital raising can be found here.