Daily News Thursday, November 02, 2006
CanWest Reports Q4 and Fiscal '06 Results
CanWest Global Communications Corp. today
reported financial results for its fourth quarter and for its fiscal year ended August 31, 2006. For the twelve-month period, the Company reported net
earnings of $179 million or $1.01 per share, compared to $10 million or $0.06 per share reported for fiscal 2005. Net earnings in fiscal 2006 included a $164 million gain on the sale of TV3 Ireland in the fourth quarter.

Consolidated revenues were $2,879 million for the year, a decline of 5% compared to consolidated revenues of $3,032 million for fiscal 2005.
Consolidated EBITDA(1) for fiscal 2006 was $509 million, a 28% decline from consolidated EBITDA of $710 million for fiscal 2005.

The Company recorded net earnings of $155 million for the fourth quarter ended August 31, 2006 compared to a net loss of $106 million for the same
period in 2005.

Consolidated revenues for the three-month period ended August 31, 2006 were $655 million, a decline of 6% from $694 million for the quarter one year
ago. Consolidated EBITDA for the quarter was $78 million, compared to consolidated EBITDA of $84 million for the same period in 2005.

Commenting on the results, Leonard Asper, CanWest's President and Chief Executive Officer, said, "All our major operations faced difficult advertising
markets over the past year with adverse currency translation contributing further to declines in results from the South Pacific. Markets now appear to
be stabilizing and we expect a firming of revenues and EBITDA in the new fiscal year. Our publications group posted a substantial increase in EBITDA in
the fourth quarter as the impact of actions taken earlier in the year to reduce costs began to take hold. A strong start in the Fall ratings is
tracking to improving revenues at our Canadian television operations and should be reflected in EBITDA growth for the first quarter. Other notable
developments during the year include the successful IPO of our publications group, which contributed substantially to the financial strength and
flexibility of the Company, the sale of our interest in TV3 Ireland and our international growth in radio with two new radio licences in the UK and the
acquisition of four established stations in Turkey. The international expansion of Eye Corp, with major deals concluded in Singapore, the UK and most recently in the US, was also a notable achievement."

Segmented Results for Fiscal 2006

Revenues for the Company's publications and interactive operations for
the year were $1,258 million, 2% higher than revenues of $1,229 million for
the same period in fiscal 2005. Publications and interactive EBITDA of $248
million for the year was down 3% from $255 million in fiscal 2005. The EBITDA
decline was primarily attributable to start up losses associated with the free
commuter daily magazine Dose and CanWest's share of losses of the Metro joint
venture. In June, the Company converted the print version of Dose to an
on-line version only. Severance costs related to this and other restructuring
initiatives in fiscal 2006 amounted to $11 million. A significant rebound in
national advertising and growth in online classified products was offset by
weakness in the automotive sector and in newspaper classified advertising. The
CanWest MediaWorks Limited Partnership declared distributions which resulted
in an amount payable to CanWest of $133 million for the period from
October 13, 2005 to August 31, 2006.

Network TEN's $197 million contribution to CanWest's consolidated EBITDA,
represented a decline of 33% from $294 million for fiscal 2005, primarily due
to a slowdown in the television advertising market that affected all
broadcasters in Australia. An 8% decline in the rate of currency translation
of Australian results to Canadian currency was also a significant factor.
Network TEN continued to post strong ratings performance, again leading in its
target 16-39 young adult demographic while also winning the number one
position in the wider 18-49 demographic. There were indications that the
television ad market had stabilized by the end of the fiscal year and we
expect an improving trend in revenues in fiscal 2007.

Weak advertising markets and currency translation also affected Eye Corp,
TEN's wholly-owned out-of-home advertising business. Revenues for the year
grew by 1% to $109 million while EBITDA declined by 15% to $20 million. Eye
Corp invested significantly in international expansion during the year and
landed major airport advertising deals for the Changi International Airport in
Singapore and the three airports of the Manchester Airports Group (MAG) in the
UK. Following the end of the year Eye Corp announced a major expansion into
the US through the acquisition of a US shopping mall advertising company that
will bring Eye Shop to over 200 shopping malls throughout the US.

CanWest MediaWorks (NZ) Limited faced similar advertising market and
currency translation challenges in the second half of fiscal 2006. In local
currency terms the Company's New Zealand operations recorded a 2% revenue gain
for the year and flat EBITDA as compared to the prior year's result. However
when translated into Canadian currency consolidated revenues declined by 11%
to $193 million, while EBITDA was 12% lower at $50 million compared to the
previous fiscal year. Revenues at TVWorks were down 11% to $109 million, with
EBITDA declining by 14% to $26 million for the year. A solid line-up of
locally produced series, international hit programs and substantial growth in
audiences for its re-launched evening news program 3News, increased 3's
audience share in its target 18-49 year old demographic as well as in the
older 24-54 demographic. RadioWorks' recorded a 10% revenue decline for the
year to $84 million, while EBITDA of $24 million at RadioWorks was 9% below
the result for the prior year. Based upon these results, CanWest MediaWorks NZ
declared a final 2006 dividend of NZ 3.9 cents per share payable in November,
which will result in aggregate dividends of NZ$13 million to be received by
CanWest in respect of fiscal 2006.

Canadian television operations experienced a 6% decline in revenues for
fiscal 2006 to $656 million from $696 million in fiscal 2005. EBITDA of
$31 million for the year was 75% below the result for the prior year due to
substantially higher costs associated with ratings-driven investment in
Canadian and international programming during a weak revenue environment. That
investment was beginning to pay off at the end of the year with increases in
airtime revenue in the fourth quarter and indications of continuing gains as
we move into fiscal 2007. Global had several programs in the top ten in the
major Toronto and Vancouver markets including the Survivor-Cook Island, House,
Prison Break, and Rock Star. Global's ET Canada, solidified its hold on the
number one position among Canadian entertainment magazine programs. Global
National also became the number one national news program in 2006. Canadian
broadcast operations incurred charges of $11 million for the year as a result
of restructuring initiatives and associated severance costs.


Highlights of the fourth quarter and the ensuing period

- In August 2006 the Company completed the sale of its interest in TV3
Ireland. Net proceeds from the sale, of approximately $179 million,
were used to pay down debt in September. CanWest recorded a gain of
$164 million on the sale of its Irish assets.

- Also in August, the Company announced the appointment of Mr. Derek H.
Burney, O.C., of Ottawa, as Chairman of the Board of Directors. Mr.
Burney joined the Board in April, 2005 and took over from Interim
Chairman David Drybrough, Mr. Drybrough will remain on the Board and
continue to serve as Chair of the Audit Committee.

- In September 2006, CanWest was awarded a second commercial radio
station licence in the UK, to be located in Bristol, Britain's eighth
largest city. This new radio licence follows the earlier radio
licence awarded to CanWest in September 2005 for an FM radio station
serving the Solent region on the South coast of England. Original 106
went on-air on October 1, 2006 from a new studio complex in
Southampton, England. No date has yet been announced for the launch
of the new station in Bristol that will also be branded Original 106.

- In October, 2006 the Company entered into an agreement for the sale
of its two Canadian radio stations, 99.1 Cool FM in Winnipeg and 91.5
The Beat FM located in Kitchener Ontario to Corus Entertainment. Net
proceeds of approximately $15 million will also be applied to debt
reduction. Completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory
approval by the CRTC.

- In October, 2006, both Houses of the Australian parliament passed
legislation that will remove foreign ownership restrictions and relax
cross-media ownership rules affecting the media industry in that
country. CanWest has retained Citigroup Global Markets Inc., to
explore opportunities for the Company in that evolving environment.

- The 2006 Raise A Reader campaign completed its most successful
campaign yet in September, raising $2.2 million to support literacy
programs in cities across Canada, an increase of 18% over 2005 thanks
to the hard work and generosity of 3,500 volunteers and national and
local sponsors. Raise A Reader has raised $7.5 million since the
first national campaign in 2002. Most importantly we delivered a very
powerful message on behalf of all Canadians on the importance of
improving our literacy levels.

- Global TV became a leader in on-line distribution, being the first
Canadian broadcaster to negotiate streaming rights to U.S. programs
including major hits such as Survivor, Deal or No Deal, and 1 vs.100.
In addition, Global National is now available daily through video
podcasts and bbTV. bbTV, launched in partnership with Rogers
Wireless, is the world's first video player for BlackBerry devices.


Outlook:

As we move into fiscal 2007 we anticipate a gradual improvement in
overall operating results. Our operations in the South Pacific are
well-positioned to benefit from stabilizing and firming of advertising markets
in Australia and New Zealand. The positive earnings trend of the publications
operations should continue in fiscal 2007 as actions already taken to contain
and reduce costs take hold and continue. There are also signs that we have
turned a corner at our Canadian television operations with significantly
improved ratings and resumption of revenue growth. In addition, continued
progress in reducing debt in 2006 has significantly reduced annual interest
expense, while augmenting the financial strength and flexibility of the
Company to pursue strategic opportunities. New media opportunities continue to
prove profitable as canada.com, FPInfomart, our websites and mobile content
distribution strategies are met with approval from our consumers and
advertisers.




CANWEST GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS CORP.
BUSINESS SEGMENT INFORMATION
(unaudited)
(in thousands of Canadian dollars)

For the three months For the twelve months
-------------------- ---------------------
ended August 31, ended August 31,
---------------- ----------------
2006 2005 2006 2005
REVENUE

Publications and
Interactive - Canada 293,211 290,242 1,258,455 1,228,851
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Television
Canada 129,444 133,340 656,275 696,106
Australia - Network TEN 156,580 187,439 656,306 783,315
New Zealand - 3 and C4 25,432 33,192 108,886 122,995
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
311,456 353,971 1,421,467 1,602,416
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Radio
New Zealand - RadioWorks 19,345 22,199 83,926 93,428
Turkey 3,480 - 5,726 -
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
22,825 22,199 89,652 93,428
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Outdoor - Australia 27,693 27,165 109,051 107,790
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------

CONSOLIDATED REVENUE 655,185 693,577 2,878,625 3,032,485
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------

SEGMENT OPERATING PROFIT

Publications and
Interactive - Canada 52,877 38,869 248,429 254,875
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Television
Canada (22,049) (12,545) 31,487 126,425
Australia - Network TEN 38,662 61,634 197,229 293,528
New Zealand - 3 and C4 7,100 7,746 25,939 30,110
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
23,713 56,835 254,655 450,063
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Radio
New Zealand - RadioWorks 5,644 5,732 23,990 26,392
Turkey 1,234 - 2,610 -
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
6,878 5,732 26,600 26,392
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------

Outdoor - Australia 3,935 5,149 19,593 23,173
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
87,403 106,585 549,277 754,503
Corporate and other (9,528) (11,078) (39,928) (32,065)
Ravelston management
contract termination - (12,000) - (12,750)
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
OPERATING PROFIT
(EBITDA)(1) 77,875 83,507 509,349 709,688
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
(1) EBITDA is defined as earnings before interest, income taxes,
depreciation, amortization, interest rate and foreign currency swap
losses, foreign exchange gains, investment gains, losses and write-
downs, goodwill impairment expense, asset impairment expense, loss on
debt extinguishment, dividend income, minority interests, interest in
earnings of equity accounted affiliates, realized currency
translation adjustments and earnings (loss) from discontinued
operations. This supplementary earnings measure does not have a
standardized meaning prescribed by Canadian generally accepted
accounting principles and may not be comparable to similar measures
presented by other companies nor should it be viewed as an
alternative to net earnings. The reconciliation of EBITDA to net
earnings is evident on the face of the following consolidated
statements of earnings (loss).



CANWEST GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS CORP.
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF EARNINGS (LOSS)
(UNAUDITED)
(In thousands of Canadian dollars except as otherwise noted)

For the three For the twelve
------------- --------------
months ended months ended
------------ ------------
August 31, August 31, August 31, August 31,
2006 2005 2006 2005

Revenue 655,185 693,577 2,878,625 3,032,485
Operating expenses 379,808 385,331 1,551,852 1,532,939
Selling, general and
administrative expenses 197,502 212,739 817,424 777,108
Ravelston management
contract termination - 12,000 - 12,750
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
77,875 83,507 509,349 709,688
Amortization of intangibles 1,285 5,456 12,423 20,341
Amortization of property,
plant and equipment 21,762 22,985 94,171 90,943
Other amortization 1,275 1,484 7,383 5,197
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Operating income 53,553 53,582 395,372 593,207
Interest expense (49,270) (58,549) (194,216) (251,120)
Interest income 908 489 2,510 2,766
Amortization of deferred
financing costs (1,540) (4,294) (6,494) (12,708)
Interest rate and foreign
currency swap losses (6,194) (64,034) (138,639) (121,064)
Foreign exchange gains
(losses) 4,526 2,637 (7,941) 8,583
Investment gains, losses
and write-downs (769) 1,296 102,490 1,527
Goodwill impairment expense - (41,406) - (41,406)
Asset impairment expense - (9,629) - (9,629)
Loss on debt extinguishment (521) - (117,401) (43,992)
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
693 (119,908) 35,681 126,164
Provision for (recovery
of) income taxes (16,192) (33,062) (76,022) 20,226
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Earnings before the
following 16,885 (86,846) 111,703 105,938
Minority interests (23,089) (17,971) (102,067) (96,597)
Interest in earnings
of equity accounted
affiliates 1,219 492 2,612 2,043
Realized currency
translation adjustments (4,086) 1,078 (6,883) 622
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Net earnings (loss) from
continuing operations (9,071) (103,247) 5,365 12,006
Gain on sale of
discontinued operations 163,547 - 163,547 -
Earnings (loss) from
discontinued operations 389 (2,813) 9,760 (1,801)
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Net earnings (loss)
for the period 154,865 (106,060) 178,672 10,205
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
----------- ----------- ----------- -----------
Earnings (loss) per
share from continuing
operations:
Basic ($0.05) ($0.58) $0.03 $0.07
Diluted ($0.05) ($0.58) $0.03 $0.07
Earnings (loss) per share:
Basic $0.87 ($0.60) $1.01 $0.06
Diluted $0.87 ($0.60) $1.01 $0.06
>>


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