HT&E: Behind APN News & Media’s rebrand with CEO Ciaran Davis

The discussions to change the name have been going on since October 2016

APN News and Media announced its first major rebrand since 1992, when it adapted that name. The new name it will be known by is Here, There & Everywhere.

APN stood for Australian Provincial Newspapers – a name that no longer reflected what the business was about after the company sold its publishing Australian Regional Media to News Corp in December 2016 for more than $35 million.

The discussions to change the name have been going on since October 2016, when APN acquired the remaining 50% share of outdoor business Adshel to have full ownership.

“By the end of 2016, as a business we were free from any exposure to traditional publishing,” Here, There & Everywhere CEO Ciaran Davis told Mediaweek. “We’ve come a long way from three years ago when 60% of our revenues were coming from publishing.”

Davis recognised the OOH, radio and digital sectors as growing industries, which have yet to reach their full potential. In order to invest in these industries, he said it was important to recognise which areas of the company would give a return and which they needed to depart from. The selling of ARM was a part of this process. It no longer fit the company’s vision and the direction it was heading in.

Davis said: “If you look at the trends in media consumption and advertising spend, if you look at what is happening with Fairfax today, traditional publishing is a challenged sector. APN was traditionally a newspaper business. But where we have been moving for the last 18 months has been to consolidate our position in multimedia and outdoor. They are growth sectors and will be continued growth sectors.”

With the new name Here, There & Everywhere, the company will focus on monetising from the consumer’s media consumption outside of their homes. Davis said that the company has all the tools to engage the audience with its radio assets, the thousands of screens operated by Adshel and digital business Conversant Media, which it acquired in 2016 from founders Zac Zavos and Zolton Zavos.

Mediaweek spoke with Zac Zavos last year. Read the interview here

“We are the only company in Australia who can offer that sort of cross-combination sectors, be that from a content, revenue-generation or engagement perspective,” Davis said.

Last year was a busy one for the company with the sale of ARM and the full acquisitions of Adshel and digital publisher Conversant Media (The Roar, Lost At E Minor). Davis says this year will be just as busy – if not more – as HT&E works towards cross-promoting its services.

Currently, The Roar produces the sports updates on Gold 104.3. Davis said all sporting updates across its two radio networks will be produced by the digital sporting website.

When Mediaweek spoke to Davis, he introduced himself as APN News and Media’s Ciaran Davis. “I’ve still got to get used to the new name myself,” he said [Laughs].

Pick up the next issue of Mediaweek Magazine to read Davis’ aspirations for ARN and Adshel, his thoughts on losing Robin Bailey and on the staff cuts at Fairfax.

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