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TV Viewers Switching To Apps As Free To Air Seven Struggles

Australians are moving away from over the air TV viewing with Seven West Media whose traditional advertising revenues are slumping reporting that viewers are instead turning to Seven’s BVOD platform 7Plus, which saw its “viewing minutes” soar by 35.5 per cent year-on-year.

ChannelNews has been told that up to 40% of Australians now view TV content via an app with Foxtel set to launch their Hubbl puck which is being described as the ultimate way to manage streaming apps in Australia.

Traditional TV stations are suffering with the owners of Network Ten, moving to lay off 800 people and Seven West Media reporting a dramatic half-year profit slump with no indications that advertising revenues are going to ever come back to traditional TV stations.

Currently free to air TV stations are making major cuts with TV news today more about car crashes based on video sent in by viewers. .

SWM’s revenue fell to $775m, from $814m (down 4.8 per cent), in the six months to the end of ­December, while its net profit plunged 52.6 per cent to $54m.

TV ratings are falling with organisations such as Google, Amazon and Apple now moving in to strip share away from TV networks. Recently Amazon Prime Video moved to sell advertising in their programs and both Samsung and LG electronics now have extensive operations selling not only advertising but information on the viewing data of their customers.

James Warburton, Seven West Media.

The decline in the TV advertising market is not expected to pick up until the fourth quarter with chief executive James Warburton who is about to exit the business, claiming that “VOZ (the new industry TV ratings model) shows the power of the BVOD platform, and that their audiences on the Seven linear platform have grown as well,”.

“We continue to believe in the power of television and firmly believe that the total TV industry is set to regain market share. Total TV is now growing, and seven is leading that growth.

Shortly Nine Entertainment will reveal their financials.

Asked about the company’s persistently low share price – it slipped a further 11 per cent on Tuesday, finishing the day at 24.5c, down 3c – Mr Warburton, who will depart the company by the end of the financial year, said while he thought the company was undervalued, its “investments are in the right places”.
“We are well capitalised, have growing audiences and revenue share, and have significant upside for growth as we pursue our digital future,” he said.

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