Nine Entertainment Co. is a large Australian integrated media group with assets in free-to-air (FTA) TV, magazines, the internet and entertainment. The company comprises the Nine Network Free-to-Air Television business and ACP Magazines; events and ticketing businesses, ‘Ticketek' and ‘Acer Arena'; and investments in a number of leading online businesses, including ‘ninemsn' (50%).
CVC initially acquired a 50% interest in PBL Media and in September 2007; CVC increased its ownership to 75%, giving CVC control over the operations of the business and a clear mandate to drive cultural and operational change. In December 2008, CVC further increased its shareholding to 99.9%. In December 2010, PBL Media was renamed Nine Entertainment Co..
Traditional media tends to see lower growth but remains highly cash generative; and exposure to new media via the online investments provides good growth exposure. The cash generation of Nine Entertainment Co. supports reasonable leverage.
The television business, Nine, is one of only three commercial FTA television networks in Australia. Furthermore, favourable industry regulation in Australia protects FTA TV’s access to some of the most valuable content, notably sports rights. Australia is widely regarded as one of the world’s most attractive magazine publishing markets and ACP is the clear market leader.
We have continued to make additional investment in sales and marketing resources, and investing in digital technology in our television business. As a result of these initiatives and an improved advertising outlook, we believe the company is well placed to achieve significant growth in earnings in the years to come.