SYDNEY: "We are not seeing what certain people are indicating in the current Australian economic situation," insists Stuart Mitchell, upbeat chief executive of Mitchell Communications Group, Australia's largest media buying agency.

"Our growth for the month of July has continued from the path of where it did in the last financial year, and that in itself gives us a lot of confidence. Our client base are very upbeat."

Mitchell's comments followed the media and communications company's announcement that billings from its clients rose 21%, passing the A$1billion (US$855.3m; €582.5m; £466.9m) mark for the first time during the 2007-08 fiscal.

Net income doubled to a total of $19.5 million on $190.8m in sales.

He predicts better than 10% profits growth this year, arguing that because 80% of the company's clients are Australian, the company is shielded from the downturn of the global economy.

As to the ad-woes of some local TV stations, many  are self-inflicted, avers Mitchell. "A lot of the TV stations are flat ... because the price of their media has increased and the audience has decreased, so people have found other ways to do it."

Data sourced from Sydney Morning Herald; additional content by WARC staff