Monday August 14 2017
Mediaweek’s James Manning and Kruti Joshi discuss the media headlines of the week. Topics in this episode include Bonds sponsoring Nova Red Room’s LA event with Harry Styles, Laurie Oakes‘ retirement, the delicious Produce Awards, Netflix’s big week, SCA’s 21 years of AFL success, subscription TV’s Parliament House event, and more.
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||3.2%||GEM||3.0%||ELEVEN||0.9%||Food Net||0.8%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||Ten Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC||12.7%||7||18.6%||9||24.8%||10 NNSW||2.2%||SBS One||5.6%|
|ABC ME||0.9%||7mate||4.0%||GEM||4.6%||ONE||2.1%||Food Net||1.0%|
|SUNDAY METRO ALL TV|
Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2017. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM
Friday Top 10
Saturday Top 10
After a challenging Monday to Thursday last week, Seven came good on Friday and Saturday with help from AFL. The broadcaster even recorded a combined network winning share for the week, although the primary channel lagged behind Nine.
To start week 33 Seven has recorded its second-lowest Sunday primary share of the survey year with 17.9%, narrowly better than 17.6% on Sunday against the final of Australian Ninja Warrior.
Seven News was the only program over 1m.
Sunday Night got its old timeslot back that put it head-to-head with The Block. It was the first Sunday Night since the massive 1.33m watching a fortnight ago, but the numbers dropped to 790,000 for a special report on Hoddle Street killer Julian Knight.
Despite a massive radio promotion in Sydney on Friday, Hell’s Kitchen Australia did 544,000 after launching a week ago on 818,000. The other two episodes screened last week were both over 600,000.
Nine’s winning evening started with Nine News just over 1.2m.
The Block guest bedroom reveals struck a chord with the audience as the show drew its biggest audience so far this season – 1.28m. The Melbourne audience was over 400,000 with Sydney not far behind on 382,000. The teams all received massive scores with Ronnie and Georgia winning another challenge despite their room not offering an ensuite. Tonight the teams start kids’ bedroom week.
60 Minutes followed with 869,000 which kept Nine ranking #1. It was the best 60 Minutes audience since 978,000 three weeks ago. Stories included Stevie Nicks with Liz Hayes, Peter Stefanovic reporting on social media influencers and Charles Wooley farewelled Laurie Oakes as the two reporters sat in a pub remembering how they nearly opened their own bar together in Tasmania.
Australian Survivor was the channel’s best with 622,000 which is marginally up on the 606,000 watching a week ago. Winners of the first challenge last night enjoyed a barbecue feast while at Tribal Council Sam was sent home. Lots of big talk during the episode and some wise words from Jacqui at Tribal Council explaining how contestants can suddenly be gripped by the game.
TEN Eyewitness News Sunday was next best on 310,000.
Two episodes of Modern Family and then NCIS: New Orleans were then under 300,000.
Lots to enjoy for Poldark fans in the series final with 551,000 watching, up from last week’s 482,000. Lots of restraint from Ross after being tormented again by George and then Ross’ wife Demelza who returned to the marital bed after being seduced, by someone else, in the sand dunes.
Grand Designs New Zealand did 531,000 earlier in the night.
A combo of viewer favourites Scotland and ancient Rome helped the 7.30pm doco slot to 279,000 and a spot in the top 20.
A doco on Titanic promised new evidence at 8.30pm, which drew the channel’s biggest audience of 322,000, and also a top 20 spot.
The 9.30pm You Are Here doco series offered Occupation: Native with 74,000 watching.
News Corporation has reported financial results for the three months and fiscal year ended June 30, 2017 (includes 13 and 52 weeks, respectively, compared to 14 and 53 weeks in the three months and fiscal year ended June 30, 2016, respectively).
The Company reported fiscal 2017 full year total revenues of US$8.14 billion, a 2% decline as compared to the prior year revenues of $8.29 billion. The decline reflects lower print advertising revenues at the News and Information Services segment.
Highlights from the News Corp analysts call on Friday.
CEO Robert Thomson:
We saw particular success at The Australian, where readership burgeoned to nearly half a million a day as of May, resulting in higher revenues and EBITDA. The blossoming of The Australian reflects the immense value of excellent journalism and the importance of strong editorial leadership. Meanwhile, news.com.au is the number one news brand in Australia, according to Nielsen, and taste.com.au is Australia’s foremost food site.
Overall, News Corp Australia remains the company’s largest print and digital publisher and including REA, which is more than 16.1 million Australians each month.
CFO Susan Panuccio:
At News Australia, advertising revenues for the quarter declined 1% or 2% in local currency, helped by the acquisition of ARM. Excluding that and the sale of The Sunday Times in Perth, advertising declined approximately 10% in local currency, similar to the prior quarter. Circulation revenues at News Australia increased 1% or were flat in local currency as the acquisition of ARM, cover price increases and higher paid digital subscribers were offset by print volume declines and the sale of The Sunday Times.
We are making progress with digital subscriptions in Australia as well. Robert mentioned the turnaround at The Australian, partly due to the success of its digital subscription offering which now has over 95,000 subscribers. Across the News Australia mastheads, we now have approximately 360,000 paid subscribers including the ARM properties, over 30% higher from the prior year. We are continuing our assessment of the cost structure at News Australia. While we achieved approximately $40 million of cost savings in fiscal 2017, it is clear that more work needs to be done particularly given our reliance on print in that market. We expect ongoing cost reductions in fiscal 2018 while continuing to drive our digital transition. Additionally, with the integration of ARM, we continue to look at our broader regional community newspapers to ensure the optimal operational and cost structure exists.
[When asked about future cost-saving measures at Australian newspaper, Panuccio said] We did say that they delivered AUD40 million of cost savings in last financial year. We would expect it to be at least that in the coming year, albeit we did also mention that we will be reinvesting for growth.
News Corp also revealed Foxtel revenues decreased 2% due to lower subscriber volumes. Foxtel’s total closing subscribers were 2.8 million as of June 30, 2017, which was lower than the prior year, primarily due to the shutdown of Presto.
Total subscribers improved slightly compared to the third quarter due to the launch of Foxtel Now. In the fourth quarter, cable and satellite churn was 13.3% compared to 14.0% in the prior year. Broadcast residential ARPU for the full year was A$86, a 3% decline compared to the prior year.
Foxtel EBITDA decreased $36 million, or 6%, to $568 million from $604 million in the prior year. In local currency, Foxtel EBITDA decreased 9%, primarily due to decreased revenues from lower subscribers and planned increases in programming costs, specifically investments in sports.
CEO Robert Thomson: Foxtel will launch a dedicated, low-cost IP box in the coming months, while the improved iQ3 state-of-the-art set-top box is showing encouraging results. In the fourth quarter, total subscribers at Foxtel, including IP, improved slightly from the third quarter and we saw an improvement in cable satellite churn.
CFO Susan Panuccio: Foxtel ended the quarter with 2.8 million total subscribers, which was lower than the prior year primarily due to the shutdown of Presto. In the fourth quarter, Foxtel Play was relaunched as Foxtel Now, which was supported by a new marketing campaign alongside the relaunch of the Foxtel brand. Including Foxtel Now, total subscribers increased modestly versus the third quarter.
In the coming months, Foxtel plans to launch an IP dedicated box, which will include a tuner for access to free-to-air along with enhanced guide and user interface. In the fourth quarter, cable and satellite churn improved to 13.3% from 14% last year, the first year-over-year improvement since the second quarter of last year. Cable and satellite ARPU for the quarter was down approximately 3% to around AUD86. And finally, for the full year fiscal 2017, capital expenditures from continuing operations were flat at $256 million.
The 1972 election was our first television campaign and, I believe, marked the point at which TV became central to Australian politics and changed it completely. Why does that matter?
Because, as I retire after more than 48 years reporting federal politics in Canberra, I’ve been thinking about why politicians and the political process are in such bad odour.
I’ve been mulling this over because I don’t believe that politicians as a species have changed much since I first walked into Canberra’s old Parliament House in January, 1969.
Almost all the MPs and Senators I have known, no matter what their party affiliation or when they were elected, were well-intentioned when they first took their seats, determined to change things for the better for their constituents and the country.
But politicians are forced to compromise their principles and disguise their true beliefs by the requirements of the democratic system. It’s the nature of the beast…
This is my final column. To my readers, thank you and goodbye.
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The new column promises to explore the world through Australian eyes – and down under from afar. Lester’s first column looks at how Aussies became the ninjas of long-haul travel.
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The Sunday Telegraph and Sunday Herald Sun changed their front page mastheads to the Sam Day Telegraph and Sam Day Herald Sun for Uber’s brand new above the line creative campaign, offering a national incentive of free Uber rides to anyone named Sam for a week.
The masthead change is a first for the Sunday Herald Sun, and a second for The Sunday Telegraph.
News Corp Australia head of print innovation Zac Skulander said: “We needed an innovative way to answer a strong brief and a really great initiative. It is a very compelling offer for our readers and subscribers, and a unique opportunity to demonstrate the flexibility of our print brands.”
Andrew Da Silva of MediaCom, said: “We’re so excited about this campaign because it truly connects a compelling offer from Uber with the readers of the leading newspapers in the country, brilliant creative work from The Special Group, integrated PR from One Green Bean and News Corp and, of course, supported by paid media. This is an awesome example of connected paid, owned and earned media.”
Some of Australia’s most talented pastry chefs, chocolatiers and ice creameries showcased their signature chocolates and desserts. The event featured live cooking demonstrations in the Callebaut Test Kitchen and visitors experienced desserts and beverages created exclusively for the festival. Returning this year were Blackstar Pastry with their strawberry watermelon cake softserve, Zumbo with their ski lodge and Vogue Café with their freakshakes. The crowds queued for My Donut Box, Pimp My Chimney and the Lindt Lounge’s waffle on a stick. Indeed any of the stalls with Donuts on their signs attracted long, long lines.
smoothfm’s weekend announcers Richard Wilkins, Melissa Doyle, David Campbell, morning host Ty Frost, evening host Cameron Daddo and smoothfm 95.3 breakfast announcers Bogart Torelli and Glenn Daniel attended the festival, mingling and taking photos with the public at the smooth star’s stage and the smoothfm relaxation station.
Also in attendance were Nova Entertainment CEO Cathy O’Connor and executives including Tony Thomas, Luke Minto, Caitriona Circosta, Ben Latimer and Peter Clay.
Other guests included Adriana Zumbo, Callebaut’s Gary and Mez Willis and Nick Wokes. group director of Initiative.
Photo: Tony Thomas, Cathy O’Connor and Melissa Doyle
Despite warnings from billionaire Andrew Forrest and the promise of support from the mining magnate, the Western Force has been cut from the Super Rugby competition for financial reasons, reports The AFR’s John Stensholt.
The Australian Rugby Union announced late on Friday afternoon it would “discontinue” the Force’s Super Rugby licence, blaming commercial factors for the decision. ARU chief executive Bill Pulver also said he would stand down.
“Our decision to exit the Western Force has been guided primarily by financial outcomes,” said ARU chairman Cameron Clyne. There are commercial realities which are linked to declining on-field performance across our Super Rugby teams which has put Australian Rugby in a position where it can no longer sustain five teams.”
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oOh!media has reported double-digit gains in revenue (+18.0%) and underlying EBITDA (+27.0%), further margin expansion, and a 4.5c interim dividend (+12.5%) for the half year ended 30 June 2017 (HY17).
Revenue was $173.0m (HY16: $146.6m), up 18.0%, and underlying EBITDA was $34.0m (HY16: $26.8m), up 27.0%.
For the first time, more than half of group revenue is derived from digital assets. During HY17, oOh! introduced a further 40 large format, premium-located digital screens across all products, taking the total of such screens to 230, and more than 1,800 retail small format screens.
The three acquisitions made during the second half of 2016 were integrated during HY17, and contributed almost half of group revenue and operating cost growth.
oOh!media’s CEO Brendon Cook (pictured) said: “oOh!’s strong performance reflects both the sector’s strength and further market share gains by oOh! in its key product categories. We offer advertisers a portfolio of products whose complementarity and diversity enable us to deliver strong group revenue and profit growth.”
Full year 2017 guidance reaffirmed EBITDA of $88-$92m and capex spend of $35-40m.
The Australian has delivered an operating profit for the first time in nearly a decade as the newspaper’s strategy to charge for journalism pays off, reports the paper’s Darren Davidson.
A return to a multimillion-dollar profit means The Australian finished more than $13 million ahead of its result in the 2015-16 financial year, a $35 million improvement from four years ago.
It’s an impressive turnaround given the newspaper had been operating in the red since 2008, battling global financial crisis effects and an accelerating drop in print advertising around the world.
“The increasing profitability of The Australian points to the value of investing in great journalism,” Lachlan Murdoch, co-chairman of News Corp, said.
Paul Whittaker, editor-in-chief of The Australian, said the growth in digital subscribers to more than 95,000, new online products and revamped print offerings were putting the masthead on a sustainable footing and shoring up its future.
“We have made it our number one priority to get The Australian back in the black while maintaining a first-class print and digital product with the highest quality and standards,” Whittaker said. “At the same time, we are continuing to innovate and invest in new products to improve everything we do in digital and print.”
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Communications Minister Mitch Fifield is locked in delicate negotiations with the Senate crossbench to revamp media-ownership laws as he considers amendments to the reform bill, reports The Australian’s Darren Davidson.
Negotiations between the Turnbull government, One Nation, the Nick Xenophon team and the Greens are finely poised, with the debate on the media reform bill expected in the Senate this week.
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The ABC’s Richard Baines reports:
Labor opposes some of the proposed measures in the bill, meaning the Government is relying on the support of the Senate crossbench to have it passed.
When contacted by the ABC, the Nick Xenophon team, the Greens and One Nation all indicated a deal for their support had not been finalised.
Tasmanian Senator Jacqui Lambie also remains undecided.
Regardless, the matter is being scheduled for debate again on Tuesday.
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News Corp has appointed Sharb Farjami as global head of social media news agency Storyful just weeks after he was installed as chief revenue officer, reports The Australian’s Darren Davidson.
The appointment comes after Farjami recently relocated to New York after a stint as content commercialisation director at pay-TV operator Foxtel.
Farjami replaces Rahul Chopra, who became CEO in December 2014 after previously serving as chief revenue officer of Storyful and senior vice president, global head of video for News Corp.
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Bainbridge has spent 11 years as MD of Ticketek New Zealand. He will relocate to TEG Asia’s Singapore base later this year to manage all TEG operations in Asia.
TEG has announced that Trina Tamati has been appointed as MD of Ticketek NZ. Tamati was most recently the CEO of the NRL Auckland Nines rugby league tournament and previously worked at the New Zealand Rugby League.
Lisa Ballard has been appointed integrated marketing manager of Kin Community Australia and fashion marketing specialist Cathy Xu has been appointed as partner strategy manager.
Ballard brings a wealth of experience in women’s lifestyle publishing, with 13 years’ experience in Sydney and London. Most recently Ballard was group brand manager, beauty and fashion at Pacific Magazines and previously worked in London developing engaging content for the luxury fashion destinations Net-A-Porter and Mr Porter.
Xu worked most recently as the Australian marketing lead at British luxury brand Burberry and Ipoh shopping experiences. Xu has worked with influencers and media personalities across events, activations and digital campaigns.
The publisher announced the launch in a statement, which reads in part: “Over the past few decades, the simple world of black and white puzzles – crosswords, wheel words, sudoku and brainteasers – has been confined to the black and white pages of magazines and newspapers. Puzzling lost its appeal to young professional women with digital mediums dominating their time. However, with the demands and stresses of modern life there has been a return to activities that spark joy and encourage engagement, so the classic art of puzzling is back in vogue…
“Advertising will be kept to a minimum and selected to ensure continuity and flow within the magazine.”
Each issue of Audrey Daybook will contain seven chapters including Thrive, Share, Nest, Glow, Nourish, Create, and Explore. Each feature will contain a combination of articles and puzzles.
Kirsty Tamplin, senior account manager at Lovatts Media, said, “We are entering the world of on-page advertising. However, our advertisers are our partners, with brands that we know the Audrey reader will want to engage with. It isn’t about disruptive media, it’s about recommending brands we know and trust.”
Audrey Daybook will be a bimonthly magazine, coming out six times a year. The first issue will go on sale on Monday September 4 at newsagents, Woolworths and Coles with a cover price of $9.95. A one-year subscription to the magazine costs $A53.
Breen revealed that the show on Friday attracted a large group of employees from Southern Cross Austereo. He also talked about a heckler who wouldn’t shut up at the gig, distracting him and unsettling some of the audience. One of the customers to the show even contacted Breen later to enquire whether the heckler was a plant.
Breen said it certainly wasn’t a plant and he explained that after he told the heckler to “shut the F up” it seemed to work.
Joining the dots for the radio audience this morning, Breen’s 2Day FM breakfast co-host Em Rusciano said she believed the heckler was part of the SCA group at the gig. She then went one step further and suggested the female heckler was from the sales team. She then threatened to name the heckler, when Breen and at least one of the breakfast team suggested that may not be a good idea.
The broadcaster has acquired the rights to produce what it is calling the world’s hottest new game show, the original US format The Wall from LeBron James’ and Maverick Carter’s SpringHill Entertainment and Andrew Glassman’s Glassman Media in association with Universal Television Alternative Studio with Endemol Shine Australia, for broadcast in 2018.
The Wall is a fast, family-friendly game show, that offers ordinary two-person teams the opportunity to win extraordinary money by conquering the towering wall. They will compete for life-changing amounts of cash that can be won or lost in an instant, depending upon whether a ball bounces your way, or a trivia question is answered correctly.
Brad Lyons, Seven’s director of production, said: “We are big fans of this show because it has all the hallmarks of a great game. It’s simple yet incredibly dramatic. It’s a show the whole family will watch and kids love it, so it’s a great fit for a broad audience. The Wall changes lives on the bounce of a ball. You can’t turn away.”
Mark Fennessy, Endemol Shine Australia CEO, said: “The Wall is a wildly unpredictable, fast and simple game show where fortunes are won and lost on the bounce of a ball. At four stories high, it’s big-time event television at its finest. We’re delighted to partner with Seven in bringing this huge international hit to life.”
Casting for the first season is open now.
• Singles: French Montana cracks top 10 with “Unforgettable”
• Albums: Five albums new to top 10, only one is a chart debut
The global chart phenomenon “Despacito” is spending a 13th straight week at #1 here and in the US. “Despacito” was finally dethroned in the UK after 20 weeks on the chart in total by Calvin Harris.
The only movement of any note near the top of the chart is from Moroccan-American hip hop artist French Montana with “Unforgettable” featuring Swae Lee up from #11 to #7 after 10 weeks on the chart.
The highest chart debut this week was outside the top 50 – Khalid with “Young Dumb & Broke” at #57.
Moving inside the top 50 from lower down the chart were:
#53 to #38 Willy William and J Balvin with “Mi Gente”
#52 to #48 Axwell & Ingrosso with “More Than You Know”
Ed Sheeran spends his 19th week at #1 with “Divide”.
Then a strange thing happened – four albums re-entered the top 10 after debuting at different times across the last six months:
#2 Lorde with “Melodrama” (Previous chart peak #1)
#3 Kendrick Lamar with “Damn.” (#2)
#4 Moana Soundtrack (#2)
#6 Imagine Dragons (#4)
This week’s highest debut – and the only new entry inside the top 40 – is “Never Too Soon” from Aussie electronic duo Boo Seeka at #8.
The chart debuts that just made the top 50:
#40 Travis Collins and Amber Lawrence with “Our Backyard”
#41 “Greatest Hits” from Glen Campbell
#45 “Deadweight” from Wage War
Nine News reporter Chris O’Keefe has been crowned the 2017 Coca-Cola Journalist of the Year at the 6th Annual NRMA Kennedy Awards for Excellence in Journalism.
O’Keefe’s raft of stories that clinched the coveted Gold Spirax trophy included the story also judged Scoop of the Year – his exclusive revelation of how gross negligence at Bankstown Hospital led to the death of a newborn baby and left another infant suffering severe brain damage after a nitrous oxide gas mix-up.
O’Keefe, who also took out the Harry Potter Award for Outstanding Television News Reporting, Scoop of the Year and Outstanding Political Journalism awards, is the first commercial television journalist to win the $25,000 Coca-Cola Journalist of the Year Award, the richest in Australian media.
His catalogue of work was judged ahead of previous Kennedy journalists of the year – two-time winner Adele Ferguson of Fairfax and the ABC’s Caro Meldrum-Hanna.
Adding to O’Keefe’s swag for Nine, cinematographer Adam Bovino took out the Gary Ticehurst Award for Outstanding TV News Camera Coverage and nine.com.au won the Kennedy Award for Outstanding Online News Breaking.
Seven’s Michael Usher, who hosted the Friday night event, took out the award for Outstanding TV Current Affairs, while 7 News Sydney’s Shaun Besgrove was awarded the Cliff Neville Award for Outstanding Team Player.
Lucy Langtry of Prime7 Local News and cameraman Rod Smith won the Paul Lockyer Award for Outstanding Regional Broadcast Journalism with their coverage of the devastating Northern Rivers floods.
Ita Buttrose was presented with the 2017 Kennedy Award for Outstanding Lifetime Achievement.
News Corp journalists and photographers took out 10 awards including Racing Writer of the Year, Outstanding Turf Reporting, Outstanding News Photo, Outstanding Portrait, Outstanding Sports Photo, Outstanding Online Video, Outstanding Travel Writing, People’s Choice Award for Outstanding photography, Outstanding Columnist and Outstanding Court Reporting.
Fairfax was again a major winner, collecting seven individual awards – the $5,000 Powerade Young Journalist of the Year (Jack Morphet of The Daily Advertiser), Outstanding Regional Newspaper Reporting, Outstanding Radio Current Affairs and Audio Blog, Outstanding Sport Reporting, Outstanding Finance Reporting, Outstanding Illustration and Outstanding Feature Writing.
The ABC collected five individual awards – Outstanding Indigenous Affairs Reporting, Outstanding Nightly TV Current Affairs, Outstanding Consumer Affairs Reporting, Outstanding Reporting on the Environment and Outstanding Investigative Reporting.
NITV and BuzzFeed News were breakthrough winners in the Outstanding Crime Reporting category while prolific Kennedy Awards winner Natalie Peters of 2GB took out the Sean Flannery Award for Outstanding Radio Reporting.
Yelena Fairfax is the founder and editor behind influencer-focused fashion, beauty and lifestyle website Husskie. The digital platform celebrates the new breed of celebrities who have made their name and fame from their work in the digital space.
Fairfax has been in the media industry for 15 years. She has worked as the fashion editor at Bauer Media’s OK! Magazine, editor of BeautyDirectory for five years and also spent time on the digital rebirth of Grazia Australia recently.
“One of the things I found was that when I wrote content about celebrities and wrote content about influencers, people were much more interested in the influencer side of things as opposed to what celebrities were doing,” Fairfax told Mediaweek.
“That was the same for me as a consumer. I read celebrity articles with a grain of salt because they are quite media trained and careful of what they say, whereas bloggers are more open and willing to share their lives more. That led me to think, What is out there that is focused on influencers rather than on celebrities?”
During her research phase, Fairfax did find content that focused on telling the stories of influencers. However, a lot of that content was about the big players in the game. There was little to nothing on the small to medium market of influencers. This is where she saw a gap in the market that she sought to fill with Husskie.