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APN buys out Hong Kong outdoor ad partner for AU$14m

APN News & Media [ASX: APN], which this year took full ownership of Australian Radio Network and The Radio Network in New Zealand, has bought out its partner in a Hong Kong outdoor advertising joint venture for A$14 million.

The Sydney-based media group, publisher of the New Zealand Herald newspaper, bought the remaining 50 percent stake of Buspak Advertising (Hong Kong) and subsidiary Cody Outdoor International (HK) from Clear Channel Hong Kong, APN said in a statement. The deal gives the Australasian company control of Buspak's bus advertising operation and Cody's billboard portfolio, which has operated as a joint venture between APN and Clear for almost 15 years.

"The acquisition of Buspak and Cody is in line with APN's strategy of wholly owning more of our growth assets," chief executive Michael Miller said. "Together, Buspak and Cody are one of the largest operators of outdoor advertising in the growing Hong Kong market and we know the businesses well."

APN bought out Clear's stake in the Australasian radio businesses earlier this year for A$246.5 million as part of an extended restructure that's seen the media group quit some assets, including its stake in a trans-Tasman outdoor advertising venture, its unprofitable brandsExclusive online shopping site, and a suite of New Zealand magazines.

The dual-listed shares were unchanged at 80 cents on the NZX and 74 Australian cents on the ASX.

(BusinessDesk)