- Southern Cross Media Group (SXL) has won $10 million in funding from the Australian Government
- The $50 million grant will go towards helping sustain news services across regional Australia during COVID-19
- Southern Cross will deploy the funds across its regional radio and TV networks
- The grant will be distributed across a 12 month period from July, 2020
- Despite the funding boost, Souther Cross share's are down 6.58 per cent, trading at 17.8 cents per share
Southern Cross Media Group (SXL) has succesfully applied for a $10 million Commonwealth grant, designed to help regional news services stay afloat during COVID-19.
The Federal Government's Public Interest News Gathering (PING) program was announced today, with $50 million in total handed out to regional news publishers.
Southern Cross Media Group owns Southern Cross Austereo (SCA), Nine Regional and Seven Regional. It also has stakes in Darwin, Tasmanian and Central Digital Television.
Since March, when COVID-19 lockdowns began, Southern Cross' shares have taken a nosedive, falling from 63.3 cents each on March 2, to 16.5 cents each on March 30. The drop is due to the economic uncertainty created by the coronavirus.
In a statemement, Southern Cross thanked the Government for the much-needed funding boost, which will be deployed across the next year, beginning on July 1, 2020.
Managing Director of SCA, which owns the Triple M and Hit radio networks, Grant Blackley said the money would be well spent.
"Regional communities and businesses have been hit hard by COVID-19. As Australia’s largest regional media business, SCA is no exception," he said.
"This funding will assist SCA's network of radio and television stations to continue to keep 8.8 million Australians, and their local communities in regional and remote Australia, informed about news and events that matter most to them," Grant added.
Despite the funding boost, Southern Cross shares are down 6.58 per cent at 17.8 cents each.