The West

Seven West records $149.2m profit
Seven West records $149.2m profit

Seven West Media has reported a $149.2 million annual profit in tough market conditions, aided by tight cost control and increased television revenues.

The result compared to a $69.8 million loss for 2012-13 when earnings were hurt by write-downs.

Excluding significant items, the latest year's profit was up 4.9 per cent at $236.2 million, slightly ahead of market guidance.


"This is a positive result in challenging market conditions," SWM chief executive Tim Worner said.

The group, the owner of the Seven free-to-air television network and _The West Australian _newspaper, declared a final fully franked dividend of 6 cents a share, making 12 cents for the year.

Seven West said its key businesses maintained strong margins, while operating costs fell 0.4 per cent after the group realised $120 million of savings over the past two years.

The Seven network generated a 7.5 per cent increase in earnings before interest and tax to $312 million off a 3 per cent rise in revenue to $1.31 billion.

"Seven continues to lead the market in television advertising revenue share, building share in a tough and competitive advertising market and delivering a record revenue market share of 40.5 per cent in 2013.-14," the company said.

The West Australian continued to outperform its peers in terms of circulation and advertising amid an industry decline in print advertising. EBIT at the newspaper group fell 23.9 per cent to $65.0 million on a 12.4 per cent decline in revenue.

Pacific Magazines increased market share in both advertising revenue and circulation. Revenue, however, was down 7.3 per cent to $237.5 million, while EBIT came in at $20.4 million.

Mr Worner said SWM's objective was leadership in content delivery across its media platforms.

"We are making significant progress in putting in place the architecture for our future development, building our businesses and advancing our presence in new forms of distribution," he said.

Mr Worner said SWM was committed to managing costs "and if that means making tough decisions on content, we will".

"This year has been focused on laying the foundations for future growth in our business," he said.

"Our market positions are strong and getting stronger, and there are a number of exciting developments ... in the coming year."
SWM's debt fell 6.6 per cent to $1.16 billion.

The West Australian

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