Every January, around the 27th, 28th and 29th of the month, Free TV Australia releases the July-December ad revenue figures for Seven, Nine and Ten. A second report is released at the end of July for the January-June period. The July-December report is the most important. Ad spending is higher in this period thanks to Christmas. In recent years the news in the half-year reports has not been good for the industry, and ad revenue for the three free-to-air networks is now back to around levels last seen six years ago. In other words, no growth, and profits have headed lower, forcing a bailout of Ten and massive write-downs (in the multiple of billions of dollars) by the three networks.

The report is released by Free TV Australia with the following footnote “KPMG has compiled the above data from information supplied by each TV network. Metro data has been reviewed by each network’s respective external auditor. KPMG has not audited the information supplied.”

The release occurs before the Seven and Nine Network parent companies (Seven West Media and Nine Entertainment) release their December half figures. Seven reports tomorrow, Nine later in the month. But so far in 2017, nothing has emerged from Free TV Australia, and the release is 17 days late. The figures must be bad. — Glenn Dyer

Peter Fray

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