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Mediaweek editor James Manning’s highlights from the third GfK Radio Ratings survey of 2018.
• Alan Jones and Jonesy and Amanda the big breakfast movers
• 2GB still king of the radio castle with all dayparts recording growth
• WSFM now #1 FM Sydney as ARN conquers four markets
• Drive by: Will & Woody lead Kate, Tim & Marty and Ben Fordham
• 3AW pushes higher as Ross and John again record 20% breakfast share
• Gold 104.3 back at #1 FM, breakfast #2 FM before Christian O’Connell
• Breakfast moves: Hot Breakfast recovers, KIIS and Nova both drop
• Hughesy and Kate continue to crush all the AM and FM drive opponents
• 97.3 and Nova tie for top spot and AM overachiever 4KQ climbs higher
• Don’t panic! Nova breakfast with Ash, Kip, Luttsy & Susie back at #1
• Mix 102.3 maintains market lead 10+ and in breakfast with Jodie & Soda
• Ali Clarke now breakfast leader as ABC Adelaide outperforms all others
• Despite a dip, Mix 94.5 #1 10+ and in breakfast with Clairsy, Matt & Kymba
• Ratings recovery 10+ for Nova and 6PR, although Nova breakfast dips
Top photo: Nova 106.9’s Ash, Kip & Luttsy with Susie O’Neill
Hit 105 content director Mathew Eggleston has been with the Brisbane station for over two years but has spent a decade with owner Southern Cross Austereo in various positions.
By Kruti Joshi
He recently joined Hit 105 breakfast presenters Stav Davidson, Abby Coleman and Matty Acton for a chat with Mediaweek. “He is the guy who occasionally gives us feedback,” Acton said as he introduced Eggleston. “We call him our boss just to make him feel good.”
“He wears a badge actually just to remind you,” Coleman added.
“It says #1 Boss,” Eggleston said. “You know how you get badges saying, ‘#1 Dad’? They just scratched the ‘Dad’ and put ‘Boss’.” [Laughs]
APN Outdoor has signed a new seven-year agreement with Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) effective August 2018.
APN Outdoor retains the 16 panels it already operates for Roads and Maritime Services and adds another 34 panels. A significant proportion of the 50 panels have the potential to be converted to digital technology.
APN Outdoor chief executive officer and managing director James Warburton said: “The Roads and Maritime Services contract was a key priority for our business. It extends and completes our full geographic coverage of Sydney and also gives us the opportunity to develop more sites including new significant digital greenfield sites on major traffic routes throughout the state.
“The Roads and Maritime Services contract is a key part of our strategy of transformation, innovation and the evolution of APN Outdoor in the broader media ecosystem,” he said.
The Roads and Maritime Services contract includes key sites on Pennant Hills Road (pictured top), Cumberland Highway, the M4, Hume Highway, M7, F5 and Warringah Road. It also includes bridge sites in the F3 motorway, expanding APN Outdoor’s footprint into regional areas.
Roads and Maritime is an agency of the New South Wales Government and is responsible for building and maintaining road infrastructure and managing the day-to-day compliance and safety for roads and waterways.
The Roads and Maritime contract follows the recent addition of the Northern Beaches’ B-Line bus service to APN Outdoor’s Sydney Transit Network and the renewal by APN Outdoor of three key contracts: Transport for Brisbane, Transdev Melbourne and Adelaide & Parafield Airports.
Australia’s media market is experiencing a mini advertising boom, with Standard Media Index reporting unprecedented demand for the month of April (total spend up 9.6% to $586.5 million) and for the calendar and financial year periods.
The market is being aided by a series of one-off events and timing issues in April but, even so, the underlying market also remains strong with ad spend for the four months of the calendar year up 6.1% and ad spend for the 10 months of the financial year breaking through $6 billion for the first time.
The Commonwealth Games were a key driver of higher demand this month, lifting the Metropolitan TV sector by 15% YOY to its highest level in eight years, while Seven’s online streaming of the Games ensured the Digital Video Sites sector was the fastest growing in the digital media this month (up 54.9% YOY) with Seven Digital becoming the second-largest revenue contributor after YouTube.
Total Digital ad spend lifted 13.3% in April (or 11.3% with the Comm Games streaming excluded) with Social Sites still being unaffected by the ongoing debate on data privacy (total Social bookings grew 18.9%) but by far the highest growth this month was in Outdoor.
Total Agency spending on Outdoor soared 32.5% in April, but a large part of that growth was due to the fact the month of April included an extra sales cycle for the large Posters/Billboards and Retail Outdoor sectors.
SMI AU/NZ Managing Director Jane Ractliffe said the Financial Services Royal Commission also continued to drive advertising demand, with Domestic Bank category emerging as the fastest growing for the month (+54.9% YOY) to make that Category the market’s third-largest in April.
“We really are seeing a perfect advertising storm with the Commonwealth Games, the Royal Commission and a lesser Easter impact this month combining to deliver record ad spend,” she said.
Among those Categories delivering higher spend in April, SMI is reporting a 15.4% increase in ad spend from the largest category of Auto Brands, a 10.8% increase in Insurance ad spend and a 20.7% increase in Government ad spend.
Matchbox Pictures this week opens its South Australian office. The new branch, based at Adelaide Studios, is headed up by South Australian producer Kirsty Stark, who will drive the local development slate in with Matchbox.
Stark comes to the newly created development producer role having completed a successful slate of projects including Matt Saville’s feature film A Month of Sundays, starring Anthony LaPaglia and Justine Clarke, the ground-breaking online sensation Wastelander Panda and the recent online comedy series Goober for ABC iview.
Matchbox has started filming the third season of drama series Wanted in SA. The series is a co-production between Matchbox and R&R and commissioned by Seven. The series will see the return of stars Rebecca Gibney, also one of the show’s creators and executive producers, and Geraldine Hakewill.
The high-rating, International Emmy-nominated show will create over 250 jobs for local cast and crew. Wanted will shoot in Adelaide and across the state from Murray Bridge to Parachilna, and is being directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse (The Dressmaker) and Peter Templeman (Wanted 1 & 2, The Wrong Girl, Offspring).
The establishment of the Matchbox Pictures SA office is set to increase the development of television drama in the state. The initiative was made possible by a two-year funding allocation from the South Australian Film Corporation (SAFC) under the Television Company Partnership Initiative.
Matchbox Pictures recently used Adelaide Studios’ state of the art post-production facilities for the award-winning Adelaide Film Festival Fund feature Ali’s Wedding and filmed Deadline Gallipoli in SA for Foxtel.
Season three of Wanted features Lola and Chelsea swapping prison for the tight leash of the witness protection program. But nothing can hold them for long and soon they’re in pursuit of a life outside the law that will take them right through the burning centre of Australia.
Rebecca Gibney, the creator, EP and lead in Wanted, said: “I am really thrilled that we are shooting our third season of Wanted in South Australia as I have never filmed in this beautiful state. We are already loving the exceptional studio facilities and are really looking forward to exploring the amazing landscapes that South Australia has to offer and that we know will give Wanted the incredible cinematic look that is vital for our show.”
Seven’s head of drama Julie McGauran said: “Audiences across Australia have fallen in love with Lola and Chelsea and we’re thrilled to commence filming on a third series. Wanted is a drama full of adventure and heart – much like its lead actors, Rebecca Gibney and Geraldine Hakewill.”
Matt Vitins, acting managing director Matchbox Pictures, said: “Matchbox is thrilled to be working with Seven and R&R on this next season of Wanted in South Australia. It will be a cracking series. We are also excited to be expanding into South Australia and with such exceptional local talent. Kirsty will be leading the charge to create some signature Matchbox drama with a South Australian feel. We can’t wait to see what comes out of the SA office. We also want to acknowledge the support of the SAFC, which has made all of these things possible.”
Kirsty Stark, development producer for Matchbox Pictures SA, said: “Having worked in SA for my entire career, I know the importance of creating opportunities for writers, directors and key creatives from within the state. I’m excited to partner with Matchbox and develop compelling local stories that will showcase our talent on a national and international stage.”
Kirsty Stark has worked in the South Australian film industry for the past decade, initially as a freelance camera assistant and cinematographer, before moving into production and founding Epic Films. Her credits as producer include Goober, Unboxed and Wastelander Panda: Exile for ABC iview, First Day for ABC ME and the feature film A Month of Sundays.
Stark has presented at SXSW and TEDxAdelaide, and received multiple awards for her work. Epic Films was named the Screen Producers Australia “Breakthrough Business of the Year” in 2016.
Mediaweek editor James Manning looks at the weekend box office for May 31-June 3, 2018.
Three massive movies lead the box office chart with a gross of over $100m between them. However, the weekend takings managed to drop by a third – from $16.58m down to $11.11m.
The first winter weekend was frosty in more ways than one for exhibitors and it was the quietest weekend since March 21 when the weekend total then slipped under $10m.
There was no new release in the top five. The biggest opening was Roadshow’s Gringo, which ranked #8 with a modest $300,000 from 196 screens, giving it an even more modest $1,545 screen average.
On its third weekend in cinemas the superhero with superhealing powers dropped 251 screens to 305. Its screen average held above 10,000 as its total sits just on $30m after three weeks.
Not an unexpected second weekend after a disappointing opening. Deadpool 2 was down 53% on its second weekend while Solo was off 47%, which wasn’t helped by shedding 177 screens while its screen average dropped from $8,478 to $5,750. Total to-date is $11.59m.
After six weekends, the third of the superhero movies (Han Solo qualifies, yes?) holds onto a top three spot. The gross has managed to pass $60m.
A fourth weekend has been helped by the lack of anything new to push this out of the top five. The film had the smallest screen average in the top five – $1,843. Total earn in its fourth month of release is $4.93m.
Second weekend for this little movie that appeals to a niche crowd. That crowd kept the screen average over $3,000 and it has rung up $1.27m so far.
• Seven takes the points with leading primary and combined channel shares
• After big week, A Current Affair starts new week with NSW police exclusive
• MasterChef & HYBPA? dominate demos, The Project enjoys record week
By James Manning
Home and Away averaged 632,000 in week 22, which was up a little week-on-week. The new week started on 690,000.
House Rules backed up its biggest audience this season of 882,000 on Sunday with 786,000 last night as the Tweed Heads home owners Kim and Michelle (pictured above) returned to see their property. Monday a week ago did 801,000.
Episode seven of The Mentor saw Mark Bouris taking on the challenge of turning around a Melbourne fashion boutique. After 419,000 a week ago, the fashion boutique fix attracted 416,000.
Good work again from A Current Affair reporters last night. First up Steve Marshall had great access with police as they busted cocaine dealers in Sydney’s east. Then Brady Halls spoke with Susan Hannaford (Kitty in The Sullivans) about a report on Seven’s Sunday Night that she said was a setup to make her look bad. “Shitty Kitty”, as Halls branded her, is even launching legal action against two media outlets. A Current Affair started the week on 887,000 after an average of 800,000 last week, which was its best week since mid-March.
Talkin’ ’Bout Your Generation featured guest appearances from Hamish Blake and Sonia Kruger. After 591,000 last week, the combo of Hamish and Andy did 653,000. The show was top five for the night in key demos.
Two episodes of The Big Bang Theory were on 490,000 and 382,000.
NRL markets got 100% Footy with 55,000 in Sydney and 40,000 in Brisbane.
Footy Classified had a three-market audience of 161,000 with 114,000 in Melbourne.
The Project hopped into Seven over the handling of the Barnaby Joyce interview, with a bit of help from ABC and Project regular Barrie Cassidy having a dig too. The highlight of the episode however was an interview with Catherine Tate ahead of her Australian tour. The episode did 590,000 after a week 22 average of 551,000 at 7pm, which was its best result so far this year.
MasterChef presented four unlucky competitors with the task of recreating a Darren Purchese special – peach melba. The episode saw Jo Kendray eliminated with 850,000 watching after 895,000 watching a week ago.
Fun times on Have You Been Paying Attention? with Marty Sheargold making his first appearance this season. The episode did 753,000 after 815,000 a week ago.
The second part of Blood On The Tracks featured on Australian Story with the two parts attracting 696,000 last week and then 623,000 last night.
Four Corners featured the first part of Sarah Ferguson’s three-part Trump/Russia special as she follows the spies and the money trail from Washington, to London, and to Moscow. The episode did 639,000.
Media Watch then did 581,000 followed by Q&A on 401,000.
The doco Elizabeth moved past 2010 and covered the 2012 Diamond Jubilee celebrations, only the second ever for a monarch. The episode did 261,000 after 246,000 last week.
Michael Mosley vs The Superbugs then did 197,000 followed by 24 Hours In Emergency on 192,000.
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||3.5%||GEM||3.3%||ELEVEN||1.8%||Food Net||0.7%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||Ten Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC ME||0.6%||7mate||3.9%||GEM||5.5%||ELEVEN||2.4%||Food Net||0.9%|
|MONDAY METRO ALL TV|
16-39 Top 5
18-49 Top 5
25-54 Top 5
Shares all people, 6pm-midnight, Overnight (Live and AsLive), Audience numbers FTA metro, Sub TV national
Source: OzTAM and Regional TAM 2018. The Data may not be reproduced, published or communicated (electronically or in hard copy) without the prior written consent of OzTAM
Digital media company Medical Media has appointed Peter Wiltshire CEO, a role he will take over from founding CEO Nazar Musa.
Wiltshire, also an investor in Medical Media, has spent the past 18 months advising Medical Media on commercialising its platform as a non-executive director and, prior to that, as an external consultant.
Wiltshire’s appointment as CEO is effective immediately. He is a former chief revenue officer for the Nine Entertainment Co.
In April of last year he founded an independent media representation and consulting company, WeThinkMedia. The business has grown rapidly and is now Australia’s largest independent media representation agency, with clients including The New York Times, MediaWorks New Zealand, 20FOUR and LUMO. Wiltshire will maintain an active role as a director of WeThinkMedia while head of sales Jane Stucci manages day-to-day operations.
Nazar Musa flagged his plans to step down to the board earlier in the year, having achieved the objectives he and the board had set, and in light of his wish to move overseas to be closer to his extended family.
Foxtel and Fox Sports Australia have appointed James Marsh as new chief financial officer.
Marsh joins Foxtel and Fox Sports from Vodafone Hutchison Australia, where he has been chief financial officer since 2013.
Foxtel CEO Patrick Delany said Marsh is a highly credentialled, experienced and energetic leader who will help steer the growth and expansion of the Foxtel and Fox Sports business.
Delany said: “James’s knowledge of the telecommunications landscape combined with his astute financial leadership and vision will ensure we transform our company for future success. It was imperative that our new CFO came with experience and expertise in large-scale customer-focused organisation and in James we have found an exceptional candidate.”
Marsh said: “I’m delighted to be joining the Foxtel and Fox Sports team and look forward to further developing the ways finance can partner with and influence the wider business to drive customer satisfaction, revenues and total company performance.”
Marsh joined Vodafone in early 2000 and has had two stints in different roles in the central group functions in the UK and three roles in operating companies in Spain, New Zealand and Australia. He was CFO of Vodafone New Zealand for six years from 2006 before moving to Vodafone in Australia in 2013.
He will commence his new role in August.
Mark Johnson has been promoted as the head of digital for Zenith Sydney, effective June 28. He was previously the head of performance. His replacement is expected to be announced shortly.
The news follows the resignation of Geraldine McDonagh, who was the chief digital officer of the company. She will leave the agency on June 28. Her role will not be replaced.
“It’s now time for me to build on the great experience I have gained at Zenith and look for a new challenge within the media and marketing industry,” McDonagh said.
Prior to joining Zenith, Johnson was group director of digital at MediaCom Australia for three years. He has also worked as performance director and senior search manager for MediaCom, as well as digital insight consultant at Latitude.
Johnson said: “Zenith has a strong digital team and a great offering for clients. With the agency’s focus on ROI and marketing-led growth, we are well placed and I’m excited to lead the team in Sydney to deliver results for our clients.”
Zenith Australia CEO Nickie Scriven said: “Mark came to Zenith earlier this year with a wealth of digital experience. In just six months he has made exceptional inroads into our digital performance structure, people, product and processes.
“With Geraldine’s departure we have an opportunity to recognise this great work and allow Mark to lead the entire digital team in Zenith Sydney and ensure we are well prepared for the future in this constantly evolving media landscape. I’d like to thank Geraldine for all of her hard work and commitment to Zenith. She will be missed by the executive team and the broader agency and we wish her all the best in her future endeavours.”
The permanent 15 square metre LED screen in Brisbane’s King George Square has gotten a massive facelift.
Sports and digital OOH technology company Techfront Australia and OOH media sales specialists MediaSeed have unveiled a state-of-the-art 40 square metre supersite.
The new high-resolution audiovisual asset has multiple display uses for advertisers including brand messaging, to be run in the form of a TVC, animation or static slide into the busy square.
Techfront chief commercial officer Nick Ebbeck said: “Brisbane’s KGS supersite is a testament to our commitment towards creating unforgettable and bespoke solutions for all the stakeholders.
“This incredible asset will provide consumers with engaging and enriching content, allow for councils to build and activate community initiatives, along with providing brands to seamlessly connect with their consumers for deeper, effective communication and engagement.
“Techfront prides itself on transforming the DOOH ecosystem.”
King George Square is Brisbane’s premier public square located in front of Brisbane City Hall and is in the heart of the CBD’s retail destination. It has more than 3,000 square metres of useable space.
The large format supersite can be used to amplify and complement consumer campaigns across all mediums, as well as live events held in the square. The screen can be networked to reach millions of consumers across the CBD every month, with nearby assets managed by MediaSeed – including the prominent Queen Street Mall location and Queensland’s Royal show, the Ekka.
Along with advertising, other day-to-day screen content includes council-generated content, topical and community programming and updates, live sporting and cultural events and syndicated news, weather and entertainment.
The AFR’s Street Talk has an update on oOh!media and APN Outdoor as they battle for control of smaller rival Adshel.
And to prove their seriousness, it is understood both are trying to put together bids where they would assume competition risk. Sources said both sides were working overtime on competition analysis, looking at where their businesses cross over with Adshel and what the concerns may be.
It means HT&E’s board could sign a deal and not worry about it falling over should Rod Sims and his team at the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission look unfavourably on the mooted tie-up.
Adshel is expected to be worth about $500 million. APN Outdoor already has an indicative and non-binding bid at that mark, while oOh!media made an indicative bid at $470 million. oOh!’s bid was subject to exclusive due diligence, although that condition has also since been waived.
Screen Australia has appointed Michael Brealey chief operating officer (COO), commencing Monday June 18, 2018.
Brealey has over 20 years of experience in the media sector, having worked at Vodafone and the ABC, and for government at both federal and state levels. He joins Screen Australia after founding COO Fiona Cameron joined ACMA as a full-time member.
“Few people have screen, arts, telco, broadcaster, federal government and state government experience, all of which we touch, so I am thrilled that Michael is joining Screen Australia at this time of rapid change within our industry,” said CEO Graeme Mason. “Everyone at Screen Australia is keenly aware of the responsibility we have to the industry, and our culture has at its heart a love of Australian screen stories and the talented people who make them. Michael’s energy and drive is infectious and I look forward to the contribution he will make to the sector while at Screen Australia.”
On accepting the COO position at Screen Australia, Michael Brealey said, “I am very excited to be taking up this role. Screen Australia is highly regarded in the industry, and plays a crucial part in supporting local talent and bringing Australian stories to our screens, something which is more important now than ever.”
Brealey joins Screen Australia having most recently been the first chief executive of Create NSW, the organisation formed from the merger of Screen NSW and Arts NSW. Prior to this, Brealey was acting executive director at Arts NSW and had earlier been Arts NSW director of policy, strategy and communications.
Breakfast presenter for ARN’s 97.3FM in Brisbane, Terry Hansen, has announced he is leaving the show and the station for family and health reasons.
He made the announcement this morning on the Bianca, Terry & Bob show, which was also streamed on Facebook Live. “I am pulling the plug because of my health,” Hansen said. “The news pretty fresh in the building.”
Hansen has been with 97.3FM breakfast since 2004.
“Increasingly over the last three or four years, once the job is done each day, I have suffered from constant and debilitating fatigue.”
“My family have been adamant that they want me well first and foremost, and had seen me like this for too long.
“Therefore, a little while ago, I approached 97.3FM management and asked to be released from my contract and leave radio. They were immediately supportive, offering reduced hours and anything that might help me stay if I wanted to. But I can’t half do anything. It would not be fair to Bianca [Dye] and Bob [Gallagher] and the new energy that has come into this show.
Dye joined the program 18 months ago, after Robin Bailey’s sudden exit from the station.
SEE MORE: Bianca Dye’s radio odyssey
“It is a very draining gig,” Dye said. “It’s a first world problem and we love what we do, but it does take its toll.”
There was no date announced about Hansen’s last day on air. He said he will be leaving “fairly soon”.
“I’m going to enjoy it for a little while longer while we look for someone new for Bianca to torment.”
To the listeners, Hansen said: “97.3FM Brisbane audience is the best audience in Australia. It is because of your willingness to share your loves, frustrations, dreams and passion to build the sort of lives for ourselves and our families that other cities can no longer squeeze out of their hustle and bustle.”
Long time listeners of the show responded immediately to the news, with many calling in this morning to express their sorrow and show their support for Hansen’s decision.
97.3FM content director Barry Drinkwater said: “All at 97.3FM are saddened that Terry will be leaving the breakfast show, however, we fully support him to spend more time on his health and family.
“Terry has been an integral part of Brisbane, helping to wake up audiences across the city on 97.3FM since 2004. There are so many great achievements for Terry, the breakfast team, and the station over the years, not least most recently with Bianca and Bob.
“We will have an exciting announcement in the coming weeks regarding Terry’s replacement to join Bianca and Bob, and we’ll be focusing over the next month on celebrating his fabulous contribution of the last 14 years.”
It was a big day for Seven reporters responding to criticism.
Sunday Night journalist Alex Cullen has hit back at criticism that he went “soft” on former deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce and his partner Vikki Campion during their much-hyped $150,000 tell-all interview, reports News Corp’s Alison Stephenson.
“I’d like to make it clear that [questions] about Joyce’s alleged taxpayer-funded travel rorts and claims of sexual misconduct were asked in our @sundaynighton7 [interview],” Cullen tweeted after intense criticism.
“The response to these (questions) was the same as we’ve heard time and time again. Vehemently denied, hence nothing new.”
Tasked with the biggest political story of the year, the interview should have been a defining moment in Cullen’s career, but instead left viewers asking if he’ll ever be given such a high-profile interview again.
After taking a serve on A Current Affair last night for the Susan Hannaford story on Sunday Night, Matt Doran put this on social media:
That would have been pathetic if it weren’t so funny @ACurrentAffair9. Mum’s alive? Any danger of meeting her? Video from a bloke motivated to stay in Susan’s good books? And rubbish claims from her daughter, who is under investigation for being a fake lawyer.
Seven’s Samantha Armytage was also active on the weekend on social media. She responded via Instagram to a story claiming she her Stellar magazine column this week defended Donald Trump:
I said NOTHING of the sort @dailymailau… anyone who read my @stellarmag column today knows that.
I’m getting really fed up with you using my image & name & misleading headlines in an attempt to get clicks on your crappy website. Desist.
Again, I ask all you smart people out there NOT to read the Daily Mail. It really is the worst.
HT&E’s esports league, The Gfinity Elite Series, debuted in Australia over the weekend.
The live broadcast took place on June 3 on Twitch. It had more than 500,000 views and over two million minutes watched.
The first match of the weekend featured Brisbane Deceptors facing Melbourne Order. Brisbane’s Konii became the first female player to compete in the sport nationally.
The first round of the series was played at the Hoyts Cinema Complex at Sydney’s Entertainment Quarter.
Gfinity and Network Ten last week announced a partnership that saw the live broadcast of Sunday’s Rocket League match on multichannel ONE.
HT&E Events and Gfinity Plc established Gfinity Esports Australia in August 2017 to launch Australia’s first city-based league, the Elite Series presented by Alienware.
Discovery and the PGA Tour have announced plans to form a pioneering strategic alliance to create a new international multiplatform home for golf, delivering the sport’s most exciting moments, players and championships to fans around the world on every screen and device.
The 12-year relationship, to begin in 2019 and carry through 2030, would include global multiplatform live rights, outside the United States and including Australia, to all PGA Tour media properties totalling approximately 2,000 hours of content per year, including the six Tours operating under the PGA Tour umbrella and nearly 150 tournaments annually, including The Players Championship, the FedExCup Playoffs and the Presidents Cup.
In addition to live linear rights in 220 markets and territories, the alliance will include the creation of a dedicated, PGA Tour-branded, OTT video streaming service that will capitalise on Discovery’s direct-to-consumer product and platform expertise as home to the Eurosport Player. Discovery expects to invest more than US$2 billion over the course of the alliance, including licensing of the PGA Tour’s international media rights and building a global OTT platform available outside the United States, with a gradual increase of annual investment during the term.
Telstra and the AFL have announced a new player agreement to cross-promote the national competition and Telstra’s services that enhance fans’ access to AFL content.
The new deal, believed to be the first of its kind involving a sports league, players’ association and commercial partner, covers the entire AFL playing group and forms part of the AFL and Telstra’s digital rights agreement, which runs to 2022.
Telstra and the AFL will work with the players to generate digital content and facilitate player appearances to give fans more insight and access to their favourite players. This will include hosting AFL player content onto the combined, official AFL and Telstra digital network.
Every AFL player is available to create digital content that will be shared with footy fans.
Fifty star players from all AFL clubs across Australia will be selected, based on their profile and influence, to become Telstra Ambassadors. The 50 players will appear throughout the year at new, local Telstra store openings and participate in community events, such as coaching clinics, and exclusive meet and greet opportunities with fans.
A financial benefit of the partnership means greater contributions into the AFL player retirement scheme.
According to the latest April 2018 Nielsen Digital Ratings, the AFL network has set a new record for unique audience (UA) reach. The network audience is up 11% on March 2018 to 4.24 million UAs. April’s result is also up 4% on the 2017 season and 2% greater than the previous record set back in August 2017.
TEG has announced the newly created Melbourne Esports Open (MEO) will be staged over the weekend of September 1 and 2 this year at Melbourne Park.
TEG is aiming for the Melbourne Esports Open to become Australia’s biggest celebration of local esports, promoted by TEG Live in partnership with ESL, the world’s largest independent esports company.
With the AFL season having a bye weekend, the Melbourne Esports Open has secured a prominent place on the Victorian Major Events calendar. The MEO is presented in conjunction with Visit Victoria.
TEG CEO Geoff Jones commented: “We are committed to creating an unforgettable experience across the Melbourne Park precinct for gamer fans from all over Australia and overseas.
“On our projected attendances, the number of matches and the sheer scale of activity, the MEO will be the biggest local esports event staged in the Oceania region. Better still, we aim to make this a celebration of the very best in esports competition.
“Tim McGregor, the Managing Director of TEG Live, is the architect of this tournament and our esports strategy. I want to commend him on the vision, thought leadership and hard work to make this happen.”
Former Socceroos striker Josh Kennedy has started hosting 1116 SEN’s new daily show Road To Russia, which is dedicated to covering all of the action of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
The show will run from June 4-July 11, 7pm-8pm each evening, and be co-hosted by 1116 SEN all-rounder Jack Heverin.
The radio duo will provide listeners with in-depth analysis of the world’s biggest celebration of football. The show will include insights and interviews with past and present players, expert commentators and influential figures to discuss and dissect all the key elements of the prestigious sporting event.
“The World Cup is the pinnacle of sporting events globally and is consistently the most followed sporting event worldwide. Road to Russia will place our Australian listeners at the forefront of all the action,” Kennedy said.
The Road to Russia program will be supplemented by tournament updates across 1116 SEN’s morning, drive and afternoon programs.