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CanWest yesterday posted a loss of $1 billion, or $5.73 a share, for the three-month period ended Aug. 31.

Analysts have expressed concern that the company is in danger of running out of cash to service its $3.7 billion worth of debt obligations.
Canwest is still making lots of money from Global Television but its huge debts were racked up by buying Southam and Alliance Atlantis.

My guess is the network will survive but CanWest will have to sell Southam, their Australian operations and/or Alliance Atlantis.

The reality is that it will likely have to be Alliance Atlantis. Leonard Asper was smoked by Conrad Black when he bought Southam so its worth nowhere near what CanWest paid.

Presumably Alliance is still worth a lot of dough so it makes sense. Don't know what the Australian operations are worth
 

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Dumbest move they ever made buying Alliance Atlantis especially when there debt load was so high. Hopefully they will sell-off Alliance to someone who can better manage specialty channels, and put some money into them. The way Global runs their current slate of specialty channels is appaling.
 

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Mr. Asper must be rolling around in his grave, his boys have run the company into the ground it appears. Looks like they are in quite the predicament now, not so sure about selling the Alliance Atlantis channels, they need those to compete not to mention the fact that the AA specialties were actually popular and made money compared to Canwest's crappy channels. If they sell these channels then they are back to where they started- Global Television Network as their main broadcasting asset.

From what I read the Australian operation is also losing money so not sure how much they would get for that if they sold it, which I think they will. The newspapers are also probably not worth very much, considering that the industry is in a decline and readership is down amongst newspapers in general.

Perhaps the government can chip in with a bailout, lots of that going around these days. ;)
 

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The late Mr Aspers purchase of the Southam Newspapers probably started this ball rolling. I don't see Canwest surviving as is. Astral Media could swoop in for the broadcast and or specialty channels. Astral could sell a few assets to Rogers to keep the CRTC happy - say a couple speciality channels and/or E!. Rogers already as a part interest in TVtropolis according to the CRTC ownership charts.

The Toronto Star could cash out their position in CTVglobmedia if they can reach a deal and pick up the newspapers. The "barely" National Post is probably dead anyways and there wouldn't be any issue with them picking up the rest of the chain probably at a bargain if Canwest were to fail. I wonder what provisions there are in the Canwest deal with the US investment bankers should they fail.

Although the Aspers company have been in desperate situations before I don't think they can pull this one out of the fire.
 

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I think Global selling their specialty channels to Astral would be a great idea. I think Astral does a great job with their own products.
 

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I think Global selling their specialty channels to Astral would be a great idea. I think Astral does a great job with their own products.
I agree and I think Alliance Atlantis should have sold these channels to Astral to begin with. Astral would have been a better fit for these services based on the others they currently own, not sure the reason behind the sale to Canwest- higher bid?!
 

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I believe when Astral took over Standard Radio they were out of the running for AA - or Canwest outbid them for AA (which may have been wise on their part to let them) and they decided to go after Standard as a consolation.

IIRC
1) CTV bid for Chum
2) Canwest won the bidding for AA
3) Astral as consolation took Standard.
 

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Many companies that chose to expand by acquisition over the last 24 months will perhaps rue the decision. Can-West has made many of these bad decisions in my view and the result is plain to see in their TV networks and newspaper media. They really took convergence to heart. That has hurt them in terms of product differentiation. Buying Alliance Atlantis (benefactors of government largesse) has also hurt them.
 

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New Interim president at Canwest Broadcasting

Less than one week after it reported a fiscal year loss of over $1 billion, Canwest Global Communications Corp. has announced that Peter Viner has been named Interim President of its Broadcasting division.

Canwest President and CEO Leonard Asper said the appointment will enable
the Company to move ahead with its business plan while it concludes its
process for finding a permanent successor to Kathy Dore who announced in
August that she was leaving her position when her contract ends in December.

As President, Canadian Television, Mr. Viner will have responsibility for
Canwest's conventional television operations across Canada as well as its 24
specialty channels.

"I look forward to working with the broadcast team to continue the work
to transform the business and address some of the challenges facing
conventional television, including the filing of our license renewals." Mr.
Viner said. "We will be focused on our core business and moving forward with
the plans that have been developed over the last year."
 

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Isn't sim-subbing Global's core business? It's got to be from where most of its revenue is derived.

As for CanWest, I'm glad to see they're more or less publishing all of Peter C. Newman's new book on Izzy Asper in my Saturday paper. It's probably the only way they'll get anyone to read that piece of garbage.

I love books about business titans; I can sum any of those books up in one sentence. The guy was a real jerk and did horrible things to his kids to teach them business lessons.
 

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Global Selling E! Network - wants out of the OTA business?

Found this article:

http://money.canoe.ca/News/Sectors/Entertainment/2009/02/05/8281856-cp.html

"Canwest has come to the determination that operating a second conventional TV network in Canada is no longer key to the long-term success of our broadcasting business," president and chief executive Leonard Asper said in a statement after stock markets closed.

This pertains only to the E! branded channels at present which means that CHCH in Hamilton is on the block.

I've always doubted Global's commitment to OTA - remember, they were moaning about switching to digital and were dragging their heels for months...

Maybe just the tip of the iceberg?

Stu
 

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Well they tried making a conventional broadcaster into a speciality network by marketing all of the stations that were part of the CH! Network as an American Entertainment Network E! instead of a low budget secondary network focused on local matters and such. I say good riddance to Canwest dumping it, maybe CHCH can get its new division back now.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Canwest Press Release
Canwest announces strategic review of five conventional television stations

WINNIPEG, Feb. 5 /CNW/ - Canwest Global Communications Corp ("Canwest" or
the "Company") announced today that it is exploring strategic options for five
of its conventional television stations, CJNT-TV in Montreal, CHCH-TV in
Hamilton, CHCA-TV in Red Deer, CHBC-TV in Kelowna and CHEK-TV in Victoria.
The sale of the stations is one of several options being considered by
the Company following an internal review. RBC Capital Markets has been
retained to assist in this process.
"These stations have proud histories of serving their communities with
strong independent voices," Canwest President and CEO Leonard Asper said.
"However, as they are currently configured, these stations are not core to our
television operations going forward."
He added: "In the current economic environment, we believe that our
efforts are best focused on the areas of greatest return including the
continued growth of our industry-leading specialty channels and in increasing
the linkages between those channels and our powerful Global conventional
television brand. We believe this process will lead to significantly enhanced
shareholder value."
Mr. Asper said Canwest has taken advantage of the shifting television
viewing audiences to develop a much stronger presence in specialty channels
and digital media while increasing the strategic interdependence between these
and the Global network. This relationship has helped generate industry leading
growth among Canwest's specialty channels. As a result, Canwest has come to
the determination that operating a second conventional TV network in Canada is
no longer key to the long-term success of our broadcasting business.
"Going forward, this allows us to invest in the areas that provide the
greatest return," Asper said.
 

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If you take away those familiar faces on the local morning talk shows and news casts, what you have left is American entertainment programs, which we already get on the American networks. The risk to Canwest is that Canadians will care less and less about watching "Canadian Television".

-Mike
 

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"We believe this process will lead to significantly enhanced
shareholder value."
Ignoring, of course, all the value the Aspers have cost their shareholders because of their slavish buying sprees. Heck, the way Canwest stock is now, even a half cent bump to their share price would significantly enhance "shareholder value."
 

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Yes, all of the Canwest E! Network stations across Canada are up for sale. It will be interesting to see how this unfolds, and who comes forward to bid for them.

http://business.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090205.wcanwest06/BNStory/Business/home
The only way they will ever get interest in these stations, if they make it clear that the specialty networks are not going to be sold. No one will lay out cash for any of these stations if the possibility of the specialty networks coming on the market. Even then you wonder who would buy these loss makers
 

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I wonder if the Jim Pattison Group, owner of three west coast E! affiliates would buy them? I would think it would be in Rogers best interest to try to acquire CJNT Montreal to convert it to an OMNI station.
 
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