News Corp’s ‘robust’ ad market and recurring revenue

Credit: Nigel Msipa via Unsplash

Robert Thompson, CEO of News Corp, announcing the full year results, discussed the performance of the Australian operation.

In a briefing with analysts, Thompson said: “News Corp Australia under Michael Miller (Executive Chairman) and his team increased its profit contribution to $109 million, its highest since separation, as subscribers Digital to News Corp Australia properties rose 12% to 964,000, and ad revenue remained strong.

As part of a global increase in News Corp’s news media division, revenue in Australia rose 6% in the June quarter. The company pointed to increased content licensing revenue, coverage price increases and digital subscriber growth.

News Corp Australia’s digital subscribers reached 964,000 (882,000 for news titles) at the end of June, up from 859,000 (810,000 for news titles) the previous year.

Ad revenue was not broken down for Australia, but global ad revenue increased more than 8% to $479 million from the same quarter last year.

Globally, the company posted record revenues and profits. Revenue of $2.67 billion in the fourth quarter, up 7%, and above analysts’ expectations.

For the full year to June, News Corp posted an 11% increase to record revenue of $10.39 billion, with strong growth in digital subscriptions and digital advertising. Net income was $760 million, a 95% increase from $389 million a year earlier.

Thompson: “We again delivered a very strong performance in advertising as well as continued growth in broadcast and subscription revenue, which was driven by the contribution of our recent content licensing agreements, digital subscriptions more high and hedging prices.”

Globally, digital revenue continued to grow from 32% to 35% of segment revenue, driven primarily by the strength of digital advertising, which is expected to soon be the media segment’s largest source of advertising revenue. of information.

Analysts were generally upbeat about News Corp’s results and outlook. News Corp shares rose nearly 5% to $25.47.

A key message from News is that the global media group is now more dependent on recurring subscriptions and stream-based revenue, and less on advertising.

Next year, News describes being “well positioned” and expects improved revenue growth and continued digital gains across the business. However, this depends on “macro conditions” and foreign currency volatility.

In the near term, the September quarter, News expects cost pressures from ongoing supply chain issues, rising prices and wage inflation.

CFO Susan Panuccio: “We will take the necessary steps to address these pressures, including price adjustments, while focusing on cost management.

“Visibility on advertising remains limited in all companies.”

Thompson told analysts of a transformed News Corp, whose revenue has grown by $1.8 billion over the past eight years, even as advertising revenue, dependent on print newspapers, has shrunk by $2.2 billion. dollars. That’s a $4 billion swing.

“It is certainly worth acknowledging that News Corp’s earnings have increased dramatically from eight years ago, growing from total EBITDA of $770 million to nearly $1.7 billion this year,” a- he declared.

“Our teams have succeeded in this journey despite the upheavals in the advertising market, despite the significant challenges of the written press and despite the pandemic.

“We are more digital, more mobile, more global, highly cost-conscious and adept at following trends, in pursuit of more revenue, increased profitability and better returns for our investors.

“The News Corporation of nine years ago is no longer the News Corporation of today. The origin and the principle remain, but the business has been fundamentally transformed. It is much more profitable and with even more growth potential. most important.

“Our teams are justifiably proud of how they have influenced the digital landscape, changing the terms of trade for media companies, bringing clarity to an opaque advertising market and increasing transparency to achieve the two innumerable algorithms.

“Business changes are integral to our continued success, but the social consequences are also profound and lasting. Nearly a decade after our reincarnation, thanks to the efforts of our employees and the confidence of our investors, News Corp is ready for the future .”

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