TVNZ CEO Kevin Kenrick said the results are an encouraging start to the 2020 financial year.

"Strong ratings performance for our primetime daily news programmes and live sport enabled TVNZ to grow share of audiences and advertising revenue for the half year," Kenrick said.

"Close to three million New Zealanders tuned in to watch Rugby World Cup games on TVNZ 1 and DUKE. TVNZ has subsequently secured additional sports rights in partnership with Sky (Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games) and Spark Sport (NZ Cricket) to complement existing Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and America's Cup content rights."

Looking into the future, Kenrick said the broadcaster would continue to accelerate its shift from international to local content and investment to future-proof the business amid growing global competition.

Despite being a good result in a tough media market, it comes at an uncertain time for the state-owned broadcaster.

This week, TVNZ head of news John Gillespie announced his resignation from the broadcaster to "pursue a few other opportunities".

TVNZ is yet to appoint a replacement for Gillespie, who will leave the organisation at the end of June.

His departure will roughly coincide with the release of a PWC report, which will advise the Government on the value in creating a super-sized media entity through the combination of RNZ and TVNZ.

Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi said in an announcement that the Cabinet had approved the creation of a business case which will look into the formation of a new public media entity.

Speculation in the advertising community about what this might mean for ad placements on TVNZ-owned channels has led Kenrick to twice send out letters assuring media and advertising agency partners that the broadcaster remains committed to providing platforms for local companies to build their brands.

He also advised that any changes would likely take years to implement in a bid to give advertisers certainty about the immediate future.