New oOh! CEO points to digital for outdoor growth

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Speaking at her first AGM, the new oOh! Media CEO told investors and shareholders that the company’s digital inventory will drive growth for the business.

Digital drive: Cathy O'Connor, CEO, oOh! Media
Digital drive: Cathy O'Connor, CEO, oOh! Media

After acknowledging the 30-year tenure of founder and previous CEO Brendon Cook, new CEO Cathy O’Connor said the company’s future was bright, even with the severe Covid downturn. She drew from the PWC media outlook report that predicts continued growth in Out of Home in taking share from other forms of media through to 2024.

She then said, “While traditional media continue to be disrupted by digitisation, Out of Home continues to benefit from changes to digital technology. Digitisation and technology provide a number of benefits to Out of Home.

“It allows us to improve our physical assets to provide compelling creative media opportunities for advertisers. It improves the measurement of the sector and ease of transacting. And it will enhance the way content can be distributed in dynamic ways.”

While print wasn’t specifically mentioned, oOh! Media owns Cactus Imaging, one of the country’s biggest outdoor media printers, and one which according to management has been performing at its most productive levels for several months.

O’Connor told the audience oOh! Media has new digital large formats in iconic locations in the Eastern Suburbs and Northern Beaches of Sydney, and said, “Looking forward, we have a pipeline of five new large format digitals and between 50 to 100 small format digitals across street furniture and retail in the next few months. We were very pleased to renew our partnership with Melbourne Airport earlier this year.”

She said, “oOh! has unrivalled scale and diversity of formats to deliver for advertisers. This scale enables us to reach 77 per cent of all metropolitan and regional Australians across more than 35,000 locations across our diverse formats. In New Zealand, we reach a similar per cent of the population with over 4000 locations.

“The combination of these formats ensures we can provide maximum reach and frequency for advertisers.

“At the same time, our data capability means we can combine oOh!’s audience environments and our extensive audience data sets - such as Quantium - to determine the best inventory to use and when to engage with the desired audiences to maximise campaign effectiveness.”

Revenue at oOh! Media declined by 34 per cent to $426.5m. The company said though it saw significant revenue recovery in Q4, across key formats - road, retail, street furniture, and New Zealand, during the 2020 year, oOh! cut some $120m in costs out of its business.

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