Mediaweek Roundup: Sony appointments, Domain cuts costs, Nine redundancies + More

Plus Fox Sports, Four Corners brawl, News Corp v Turnbull, and more.

Business of Media

Sony Music announces hire of Nova’s Claire Marshall and other staff moves

Sony Music Entertainment chairman and chief executive officer of Australia and New Zealand Denis Handlin has revealed a number of key staff appointments including the hire of a key executive from Nova Entertainment.

sony Therese Ryan, Claire Marshall, Ben Hock, Tom Gilmore

Therese Ryan

Ryan has returned to the Australian company as Senior Director, Business Development, ANZ, reporting to Denis Handlin.

In her new role, Ryan will have a multi-faceted role that includes cross-marketing and developing both Australian and New Zealand local artists in each other’s markets, working closely with Kim Boshier (MD, New Zealand) and Wayne Ringrow (VP, Australian Artists Marketing). Therese will also be involved with the company’s Brands and Artist Management divisions by growing our revenue across these new verticals.

Ryan joined Sony Music Australia in 2009 as Publicity & Promotions Coordinator after interning in the A&R department. In 2010, she was promoted to National Publicity Representative and went on to Manager, National Publicity, Senior Manager, National Communications and then Director of National Communications.

In March 2019, Ryan relocated to the Hong Kong office to take up the position of Senior Director, Artist Development, Asia, where she was responsible for developing and executing regional campaigns for our international and local artists, and enhancing the presence of artists in the Asian markets. She led the ARO marketing team to drive promotion, marketing and sales success by constantly liaising with international labels and all Asian markets.

Claire Marshall

Marshall has joined the company as Senior Director, Catalogue Streaming & Strategic Partnerships, reporting to Sophie McArthur (VP, Partner Development & Streaming Strategy, ANZ).

In this role, Marshall will be responsible for growing digital market share for Sony Music’s priority catalogue artists through digital marketing initiatives and DSP artist activations in partnership with the digital account management team. With Marshall’s radio programming experience, she will support the continued growth of Sony Music playlists in the Filtr range. Marshall will also work closely with Dan Nitschke (VP, Business Development & Media Partnerships, ANZ) on fostering and expanding our relationships with key brand, entertainment and commercial partners.

With a career spanning 24 years in radio, Marshall commenced at Southern Cross Austereo prior to moving to Nova Entertainment after it launched in Perth. Marshall held music programming roles for almost a decade at the Network before moving to Sydney in 2014 to become Nova Entertainment’s Music Marketing Director, tasked with building the business’ live music brands including Nova’s Red Room and smooth’s Feel Good Night.

Ben Hock

Hock has joined the company as Senior Manager, Social Media & Content, reporting to Sophie Paterson (Senior Director, Audience Development & Digital Communications, ANZ).

In this role, Hock joins Sony Music’s in-house audience development team who are responsible for leading the social media and content strategy for a range of both domestic and international artists. He will be also involved with the ideation and execution of broader company social and content initiatives.

Hock has extensive experience across PR, social media, paid media, content creation, influencer content and project management. He joins us from IAG where he held the role of Creative & Innovation Specialist from 2019. Prior to this, he worked at We Are Social as a Senior Account Manager from 2016 to 2019. He also held the held the role of Senior Account & Creative Manager at Adhesive PR from 2012 to 2016.

Tom Gilmore

Gilmore has joined the company as Manager, Data & Analytics, reporting to Sophie McArthur.

In this role, Gilmore will be responsible for analysis using our internal and third-party data sources to deliver insights, identify business opportunities and create efficiencies. He will support the team and business by developing market, audience and platform reports and tools.

Gilmore has been working in and around music and data for over a decade. He joins us from Universal Music Australia where he held the role of Digital Catalogue Campaign Manager from 2015 and prior to that, Pricing & Commercial Analyst from 2013 to 2015. Prior to this, he was the Chart & Music Manager at The Music Network from 2010 to 2013.

Domain to cut costs 12% as critical spring selling season ‘less pronounced’

Real-estate listings company Domain unveiled plans to cut almost 12 per cent in costs in the first half of the new financial year but has warned the crucial spring selling season has been weaker than in previous years, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Zoe Samios.

Domain was one of many companies that was forced to scrap its dividend at full year results due to increased financial pressure caused by economic factors related to the coronavirus pandemic. The company swung to a $227 million loss, dragged by a major write-down of its digital division, while revenue fell 22 per cent.

At its annual general meeting on Tuesday, Domain told investors it would cut 12 per cent from its $96.5 million cost base in the first half of the current financial year through the JobKeeper scheme and its program, Project Zipline, which gave staff the option to reduce the amount they were paid in cash for share options.

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News Brands

News Corp denies Malcolm Turnbull claims over bushfire coverage

News Corp Australia has rejected former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull’s allegations that its newspapers blamed last summer’s deadly bushfires on arsonists, reports News Corp’s Lilly Vitorovich.

“This unsubstantiated statement is blatantly untrue. The facts demonstrate starkly the falsity of Turnbull’s claim,” a News Corp spokesman said on Tuesday after the former Liberal leader criticised the coverage during ABC’s Q+A program.

News Corp’s newspapers including The Australian, The Daily Telegraph, Herald Sun, The Courier-Mail and The Advertiser published 3335 stories about the bushfires from September 1 last year to January 23. Only 3.4 per cent of the published stories mentioned “arson” or “arsonists”.

Over the same period, News Corp’s national news site,, published more than 300 bushfire stories, of which only 16 mentioned arson, equivalent to 5 per cent of stories.

“Not one of these small number of stories stated the bushfires were ‘all the consequence’ of arsonists,” the spokesman said.

Earlier this year, News Corp Australasia executive chairman Michael Miller refuted claims that the media company did not believe in climate change.

“Contrary to what some critics have argued, News Corp does not deny climate change or the gravity of its threat,” Miller said.

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Four Corners fallout has Christian Porter and ABC’s Louise Milligan brawling

A war of words has erupted between embattled Attorney-General Christian Porter and the ABC over the public broadcaster’s reporting of allegations that he had a relationship with a staffer and how he was asked to respond to the claims, reports The Australian’s Richard Ferguson.

Porter was the focus of the Four Corners episode in which former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull alleged he counselled the then social services minister over his behaviour after being seen with a young woman at the popular Canberra bar Public in December 2017.

The Attorney-General – who denies the allegations and is considering his legal options – attacked journalist Louise Milligan for not directly contacting him over the story.

But after initial confusion over the sequence of events, Porter’s office confirmed to The Australian that it had been contacted several times by other ABC journalists – including Four Corners’ long-time executive producer Sally Neighbour – about the program’s allegations over a two-week period.

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Nine trims promo department with round of redundancies

Nine culled jobs from its promo department last week, not long after moving into the new North Sydney headquarters.

TV Tonight reports around a dozen redundancies were made in 9Creative last week.

The shift from Willoughby has led to technological and skills changes but COVID has also seen smaller teams working across projects.

In recent months most of the Promo staff have been working from home.

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Sports Media

Fox Sports the big winners from Virat Kohli’s baby bombshell

Virat Kohli’s baby bombshell has split cricket’s broadcasters, but Fox Sports is seizing on a rare chance to claim almost exclusive rights to a global phenomenon, reports News Corp’s Ben Horne.

Kohli’s announcement that he will fly home after the first Test in Adelaide and not return puts free-to-air partner Channel 7 at a major disadvantage, because Fox has sole access to the six-game white ball series that the Indian superstar will headline to open the summer later this month.

“We’ve been sweating on Kohli coming here and something is better than nothing. But not only that, we’ve got those first six games exclusive on Fox Cricket,” said Fox’s executive director, Steve Crawley.

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