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TVNZ Interim Result "A Positive Start"

Media Release 31 March 2008

TVNZ Interim Result "A Positive Start" to Network Turnaround

TVNZ has reported a pleasing improvement in financial performance for the first half of the fiscal year.

The after-tax result for the half year was a profit of $20.6 million – an increase of $4.7 million on the same period last year.

Operational earnings (earnings before interest tax and fair value changes on derivative financial instruments) returned $32.3 million compared with $31.2 million for the same period last year.

TVNZ Chief Executive, Rick Ellis, says the results of the first six months have been encouraging, both in terms of the financial result and the improved performance of both channels compared with the same period last year.

"The half-yearly result is ahead of budget, and we are forecasting to remain ahead for the full year," he said. " This is a positive start to our three year turnaround plan for the company. There is a lot of hard work still to go, but I am cautiously optimistic that we are getting back on our feet".

Mr Ellis said ONE News had achieved a year-on-year gain in the last two months of the period, and the channel as a whole either equalled or surpassed its prior year ratings and share performance in four of the last six months.

Other programmes in the News and Current Affairs stable continued to perform strongly, notably Breakfast, which had increased its audience by 27% since a competitor entered the market. Mr Ellis said at its peak, the programme was attracting prime time audience sizes – a new development in the New Zealand television market.

The initial costs of the launch of TVNZ 6, and associated Government funding, are reported in the period.

The launch of this channel in September on the Freeview platform, along with the launch yesterday of TVNZ 7, were noted by Chairman Sir John Anderson as marking a 'most significant development in TVNZ's capacity as a public broadcaster'.

This year's Interim Report also includes an analysis of programming broadcast during the six months – much of it funded with commercially earned revenues - that meets one or more of the seven key Charter themes.

This is part of the new Charter performance measurement framework that has been developed in consultation with the Ministry for Culture and Heritage to help give greater transparency to the company's performance as a public broadcaster.

For the full Interim Report, please go to the TVNZ website, select About TVNZ, Publications.


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