Seven flags virus hit on ad markets

Kerry Stokes’ diversified Seven Group says that COVID-19 has had an “unprecedented impact on advertising market” at Seven West Media, with metro advertising down 30.7 per cent in April and down 9.3 per cent year-to-date.

Seven West Media is responding by cutting spending by $90 million by June 2020 and a further $110 million in FY20/21, the group said in an investor presentation lodged with the ASX on Friday.

Seven West Media also announced late on Thursday it had revised a contract with the AFL that would save it $87 million from 2020 to 2022.

The deal would also extend Seven West Media’s deal with the AFL for another two years, through to 2024.

The AFL season recommenced on Thursday night and will conclude with the Grand Final on October 24.

Seven Group announced in April it was withdrawing its guidance and the company on Friday said it wouldn’t provide revised market guidance at this time due to the uncertainty around the COVID-19 measures.

At 1152 AEST, Seven Group shares were down 0.8 per cent to $16.88 while Seven West Media shares slid down 11.3 per cent to 13.75 cents.

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