Wednesday, 6 May 2009


We like Cactus think that there is a fair degree of whiffiness about the purchase of CountryWide Rural publishing by NZX. Yesterday we put up a post about the concerns Australian regulators are having over the merging of advertorial and editorial, the greying of the media. Trans Tasman is asking ComCom to take a look a the purchase.

Fran O'Sullivan has done a very considered piece on the NZX media purchase but she too wants ComCom to take a look at just what they are on about after leaked memo indicates that NZX is heading towards " world dominance" of rural information.

We think that the last few paragraphs of this story are the most pertinent. Fran asked Weldon if the new stable of publications would have editorial independence - of course says Weldon. Then she asked him about the feisty Alan Robb who has written some pithy articles in Diary Exporter about Fonterra and NZX's wimpy attitude to some disclosure issues.

""One intriguing factor is that NZX Rural will now own NZ Dairy Exporter, which has published some vigorous articles by accountancy expert Alan Robb questioning why the exchange did not compel Fonterra to restate its recent interim accounts to directly marry up with the 2007 financial year interim result.

Robb has taken a gutsy approach on this score.

Weldon maintains that Fonterra disclosed the nature of the changes to the market, and the NZX had communicated with the co-op and was comfortable that there was sufficient disclosure to meet the needs of bond investors.

Herald: "Would the exchange protect the editorial integrity of its publications?"

Weldon: "The answer to that is, without question, yes. There is, I have to say, a fair degree of disappointment from myself and internally that we've got this person Alan Robb whom we now pay who apparently has issues with presuming what our level of integrity about editorial is."

Speaks volumes.""

Yip we agree, ComCom needs to have a look and it reiterates our point in running the post about the merging of editorial and advertising. If Weldon doesn't get it then he has no business buying an independent media stable.

1 comment:


What I find strange is why the NZX is buying up media companies when their values are plumetting.
Does Weldon have some secret to success that every other media business has failed to find?