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APN ‘very confident’ about paywall for Qld papers

Wednesday, 20 May 2015
By Print 21 Online Article

Newspaper publisher APN News & Media is to follow News Corp and Fairfax Media and launch a metered paywall system for its publications.

APN’s regional media arm, Australian Regional Media, will become the first Australian regional publisher to charge for online content when the metered model begins rolling out at its Queensland daily publications in the second half of this year. The move was announced this morning to the ASX.

“We firmly believe the introduction of a content‐driven metered subscription model to our regional audiences will grow news media revenues over time, as has been demonstrated in international markets,” said APN CEO Michael Miller in an APN Investor Day update.

'Confident.' Michael Miller, APN CEO.

Miller told Print 21 he’s ‘very confident’ the paywall model will be taken up by online readers in regional Queensland. “The metered subscription model has been around for a long time now and we’ve thoroughly researched the market.  This is a new model and it will take time but media consumption is a habit and we offer exclusive content that no other media outlets can deliver.”

APN’s Queensland publications include the Sunshine Coast Daily, the Newsmail in Bundaberg, The Gympie Times, the Chronicle in Toowoomba, Gladstone’s The Observer, Mackay’s Daily Mercury, Rockhampton’s The Morning Bulletin and others.

APN also announced plans to expand the company’s outdoor advertising business. Street furniture unit Adshel will phase out paper and glue at 35 roadside locations in Auckland in favour of digital formats and Adshel will introduce a national digital network in Australia during the second half of this year.

“We continue to expand our digital capabilities and audiences through investment in infrastructure,” said Miller. “The launch of Adshel’s street furniture digital network will broaden consumer reach and revenues across Australia and New Zealand.”

APN said its positive start to 2015 had continued, with year‐to‐date group revenues 6% ahead of the prior year.  APN’s New Zealand business, NZME, which includes the NZ Herald and a range of other newspapers and radio stations, including Newstalk ZB, posted a 50 percent surge in year-to-date digital revenues, with online revenue market share increasing from 16 per cent to 20 per cent.


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