They say no news is good news, but the new News Corp. is making headlines. In mid-2013 media mogul Rupert Murdoch split his print media and broadcast media holdings into separate companies. News Corp. now consists of newspapers (The Wall Street Journal, New York Post, Australia's Herald Sun, and The Sun and The Times in the UK), information services ( Dow Jones and Factiva), and book publishing ( HarperCollins). It also owns FOX SPORTS Australia, a stake in Australian real estate web portal REA Group, and a 50% share of Australian pay-TV provider FOXTEL. Murdoch’s US-based TV and film holdings are now organized into Twenty-First Century Fox, which includes networks FOX and FOX News.
The company’s subsidiaries are located in Australia, the UK, and the US. In addition, book publisher HarperCollins has a warehouse in Scotland and Dow Jones runs an office in Hong Kong. North America accounts for more than 40% of sales.
News Corp. divides its operations into six segments –- news and information services, book publishing, cable network programming, digital real estate services, digital education, and other. (Its 50% stake in FOXTEL is treated as an equity investment.) The print and digital media publications (news and information services, book publishing) account for the majority of revenues.
The news and information services segment also includes News America Marketing Group (NAMG), a publisher and distributor of coupons in newspapers and on the SmartSource.com website. NAMG’s customers include many of the largest consumer packaged-goods advertisers in the US and Canada. It reaches 74 million households for its freestanding coupon inserts and about 56,000 retail outlets for its in-store advertising.
The digital education segment consists of Amplify, the brand for News Corp.'s digital education business.
During the split Murdoch moved the Australian TV operations to News Corp. in order to allow the US TV operations to grow as a stand-alone division.
Sales and Marketing
The company spent about $534 million on advertising and promotional expenses during fiscal 2015.
News Corp.'s revenue has been flat across the past five fiscal years. It reported revenue of $8.63 billion for fiscal 2015, which was a slight increase compared to the prior year.
The company suffered a net loss of $147 million in fiscal 2015 primarily because of impairment and restructuring charges. Despite the net loss and a slight drop in cash on hand, News Corp's cash flow remains strong. The company had $831 billion in cash on hand at the end of fiscal 2015.
Splitting the business into separate publishing and entertainment companies allows each company to pursue uninhibited industry-specific opportunities, benefit from greater financial and operational flexibility, and provide investors with a more targeted investment opportunity.
Mergers and Acquisitions
In September 2013 News Corp. exited the small-town local newspaper business when it sold its Dow Jones Local Media Group, with 33 publications, to an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group to be managed by GateHouse Media. The Dow Jones Local Media Group daily newspapers included the Cape Cod Times (Hyannis, Massachusetts) and The Record (Stockton, California). In addition to daily and weekly newspapers, it also operated the papers' websites as well as news and advertising niche publications.
Chairman Rupert Murdoch, with an estimated net worth of $11 billion, owns almost 40% of the company's voting stock.