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World-first SMI Partnership Delivers a New Standard in Industry Ad Spend Reporting

Sydney, 11th May 2016 – Standard Media Index (SMI) has today launched a world-first initiative to deliver a new standard of media industry advertising spend data in collaboration with Australia’s industry body for the print and digital news publishing sector, NewsMediaWorks.

Publisher members of NewsMediaWorks, which represents Australia’s leading news media publishers, have become the first in the world to provide a third party direct access to their payment systems to deliver the most robust data on the sector’s advertising expenditure.

NewsMediaWorks partnered with Standard Media Index – which sources its global ad spend data directly from the booking systems of the world’s largest media Agencies – as SMI’s systems have proven their reliability across multiple Agency markets.

“This is the first time SMI has used its bespoke data collection and processing software to collect advertising bookings directly from media companies,” SMI AU/NZ Managing Director Jane Schulze said.

“It’s an honor to be trusted with such an important assignment, and we are confident we have now produced the most reliable advertising expenditure report ever produced by a media industry organization.”

The new quarterly data, entitled the News Media Index for advertising revenue – powered by SMI has already highlighted the robust health of Australia’s news media industry, with total advertising expenditure of $2.4 billion in the 2015 calendar year.

The data also provides the first breakdown of ad spend for the media’s key segments – Print, Digital and Newspaper Inserted Magazines – and is also the first to include Direct (or local) advertising revenues.

“The data is being created using the same systems and processes SMI employs to collect the data of our Global media Agency partners in more than 15 markets around the world,” Ms Schulze said.

“And all the publisher data has also been mapped to the same SMI Data Taxonomy used by our Agency partners, ensuring easy like-for-like reporting by the industry and advertisers.”

The new data will also enhance commercial transparency of the news media sector for its key stakeholders, such as advertisers, media agencies and investors.

NewsMediaWorks CEO Mark Hollands said: “No other media sector has made such a deep commitment to digital publishing and this is now beginning to deliver true commercial momentum.

“The new index responds to requests of advertisers and investors to reveal that the Australian news media sector has been significantly undervalued by independent analysts. It provides the first real view of the news media sector’s true size,” he said.

Ms Schulze said the news media industry has always been the most respected source of information so it makes sense for it to also publish the most robust figures when it comes to the size of its advertising expenditure.

“And given the ongoing confluence of traditional and digital media, eventually all other industry groups representing ‘traditional’ media will have to follow the lead set today by NewsMediaWorks,” she said.

This significant partnership is the first time Australia’s news publishers have committed to routinely providing accurate and timely revenue data, which signals the industry’s commitment to creating commercial balance and profitable growth across publishers’ print and digital assets.

SMI captures 99% of total national Australian agency spend exclusively from the booking systems of global media holding groups, as well as leading independents. It reports monthly on actual spend data and is the clearest picture of the flow of dollars across the sector.

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