Hugh Marks.
Hugh Marks.

Nine first-half profit slides 41%

Nine Entertainment has reported a 41 per cent drop in first-half net profit but an increase in revenue in the wake of its merger with Fairfax.

The publicly-listed media company saw its net profit after tax drop to $101.86 million.

However, the group's revenues from continuing operations for the half-year ended December 31 increased by 65.7 per cent to $1.18 billion.

Highlights for the company included a $35 million earnings improvement at video streaming service Stan, with subscribers exceeding 1.8 million, as well as a 65 per cent growth in video-on-demand 9Now's earnings.

Chief executive Hugh Marks said the result was testament to the work done to reposition Nine for a digital future.

He said strong growth in the company's digital businesses helped to offset some of the "cyclical headwinds" faced by its traditional media assets.

Nine announced a fully-franked half-year dividend of five cents per share, the same as last year.