Forget Nine – Seven West Media (SWM) is the media company tipped to join forces in some way with Fairfax, if this latest bout of speculation is anything to go by.
The Australian Financial Review reported that its publisher, Fairfax, commenced discussions around potential deals with Kerry Stokes’s (pictured above) media behemoth that could benefit both companies before the federal government’s media reforms were passed via the Senate last week.
However, the AFR’s sources noted that the Fairfax-SWM discussions are only in their infancy, and that there may not even be a deal to come out of them.
Rumours have been swirling for some time around Nine and Fairfax coming a little closer together – perhaps through a merger.
And following the passing of the media reforms through the Senate, which included the scrapping of the ‘two out of three’ rule, SWM’s most likely acquisition target was expected to be its affiliate regional broadcaster, Prime Media, which is part-owned by Seven Group Holdings (the biggest shareholder of SWM).