Media briefs

Feb 17, 2017

Murdoch and Gordon prop up Ten, but will Packer abandon ship?

In the face of Ten's horror results, is James Packer going to jump off the sinking ship?

Glenn Dyer — <em>Crikey</em> business and media commentator

Glenn Dyer

Crikey business and media commentator

What is the value of a TV licence? And does Ten have the financial capacity to absorb another big impairment of those licences? The network’s bean counters are now trying to work that out in the wake of yesterday’s surprise profit downgrade and forecast of a return to losses for the six months to February 28. If Ten can’t, it might have to raise more cash from shareholders.

The value of those licences has been a shrinking figure in recent years. In fact, asset write-downs are becoming so regular at Ten that it could be considered a normal cost of business, instead of being classified as a one-off item each year. In 2014-15 more than $251 million was carved off the value of its TV licences, and a further $135.1 million was chopped.

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