Friday March 16, 2018

Sales secrets about brand strength, revenue strategy, podcasting and staff retention

Nova Entertainment Melbourne commercial director Andrew Will talks selling radio with Mediaweek’s James Manning.

Mediaweek started the week of radio survey 1 speaking with SCA’s Brian Gallagher. We finish what has been a big week for radio spending time with one of the key drivers behind the success of Nova Entertainment.

• Radio Ratings: Network programmers on GfK survey #1, 2018

“I love my music,” Andrew Will told Mediaweek about why he decided to leave the TV sector for radio seven years ago.

“The community feel that the Nova workplace has was another appeal.”

Nova Entertainment’s Melbourne commercial director was talking to Mediaweek in his Melbourne office adjacent to the sales floor, which was brimming with energy.

Although he enjoyed his time in TV working for Nine and then Seven, Will admitted he wished he’d made the move to radio a little earlier in his career.

When we suggested there seemed to be a little less pressure in the radio world than working in television, Will replied: “I would agree with that. TV takes a little longer to reach the audience. Some of the content is filmed and goes to air much later. Everything in radio is live or on a much shorter cycle.”

That has benefits for advertisers too. “If you want to get a message to air, we can head into the studio and get it to air within an hour.”

Will looks after a sales team of 45 in Melbourne who cover agencies and direct business. “Our job is to commercialise any asset that Nova Entertainment creates.”

When asked if there was much internal checking of how much business the respective markets write, Will said there was “healthy competition”.

This is an excerpt from the full article, which appears on Mediaweek Premium. Read the full article here, or subscribe to Mediaweek Premium here.

Shareholders give Hutchy a green light to merge Crocmedia with Pacific Star

Pacific Star Network shareholders have today overwhelmingly endorsed the 10 resolutions that were put before a general meeting in Melbourne.

SEN and Crocmedia announce merger plans, Hutchy to run new company
Pacific Star reports improved results ahead of Crocmedia merger

The proposals all related to the merger of Pacific Star with Crocmedia, which was in effect a reverse takeover with Pacific Star acquiring Crocmedia and then engaging Crocmedia to run the business.

Pacific Star operates a number of media businesses, most prominent among them Melbourne radio station 1116 SEN.

The proposed board and senior management team includes three existing Pacific Star Network executives, chairman Craig Coleman and directors Andrew Moffat and Colm O’Brien, plus three from Crocmedia – managing director Craig Hutchison, executive director Chris Giannopoulos and general manager Jodie Simm.

The meeting was presented with an overview of the sports, entertainment and lifestyle content business, details of its footprint and details of the revenue sources.

Shareholders were told the deal placed the value of the merged business at the lower end of comparable media businesses.

Proxy voting resulted in a Yes vote recorded for every resolution with the highest No vote related to the proposals to give a performance bonus via shares to Hutchison and Giannopoulos. Even then the No vote was less than 1% of the overall.

As part of a national roadshow to launch Crocmedia’s coverage of the AFL and NRL seasons, Hutchison was in Adelaide last night for an AFL Nation launch.

Photo: Craig Hutchison with Malcolm Blight

Start your engines: Fox Sports launching Formula 1 season with dedicated GP channel

• 24/7 dedicated motorsport channel switches on March 19 for coverage of Melbourne Grand
• Fox Sports promising live and ad-break free coverage of the Rolex Australian Grand Prix qualifying and race for first time

• Every 2018 F1 event after Melbourne exclusively live on Fox Sports

Fox Sports is promising to deliver its biggest-ever coverage of the 2018 Formula 1 Rolex Australian Grand Prix, with the qualifying sessions and race available ad-break free for the first time ever.

Fox Sports will deliver live, start-to-finish coverage of the event, all on a dedicated 24/7 pop-up channel, with all practice sessions also available live in HD.

The Australian Grand Prix launches the biggest year of Formula 1, with every event after the season opening race available exclusively live on Fox Sports.

Fans can also stream all of the action live via Foxtel Now.

Fox Sports’ head of television Steve Crawley said: “In 2018, we’ll deliver motorsport fans what they want – ad-break free coverage of the Melbourne Grand Prix qualifying and race for the first time. This means that every race on the Formula 1 calendar is now ad-break free for Foxtel viewers.

“After the season opener in Melbourne, Fox Sports will be the only place to watch every race from practice through to the main race live. If you love F1, Fox Sports is the place to be.”

Daniel Riccardo (credit: Shutterstock)

Fox Sports 506 will become the home of the Australian Grand Prix from Monday (March 19), before the live action begins on March 22.

And for the first time, the Coates Hire Supercars Melbourne 400 will count towards the Championship, launching a massive four days of live racing.

Supercars Trackside returns from 5pm on March 22, and 7.15pm on March 25 to preview and review the Supercars action.

Fox Sports’ commentary team, featuring Jess Yates, Mark Skaife and Russell Ingall, returns to host the 60-minute programs alongside Supercars experts Neil Crompton and Greg Murphy, and technical analyst Mark Larkham.

Chris Stubbs and Riana Crehan will keep fans up to date with the latest and breaking news from Pit Lane.

In addition to wall-to-wall coverage of both events, the pop-up channel will feature classic Formula 1 and Supercars races and reviews of past seasons.

Fox Sports will broadcast Sky Sports’ world-class production to Australian viewers, providing them with unparalleled Formula 1 coverage. With ex-drivers Martin Brundle, Damon Hill and Johnny Herbert and commentators Ted Kravitz and David Croft as part of the lineup, fans receive all the news and analysis from the ground at every race.

Fox Sports’ Formula 1 Race Centre will be the ultimate companion to the TV broadcast. Available via and the Fox Sports app, the Race Centre will offer fans unrivalled access to four additional video streams including live timing, in-car cameras, pit lane with snippets from team radios and a driver tracker, plus an up-to-the minute blog of key events during the race.

The Supercars Race Centre will offer fans access to team radio, car telemetry for all 26 Supercars, plus live timing and racing stats, along with a dedicated Supercars blog.

Herald Sun’s Full-On Footy Tour with Foxtel wraps at Prahran pub, The Flying Duck

The final event in the Full-On Footy Tour with Foxtel was in Melbourne last night after travelling more than 10,000km across the eastern seaboard.

News Corp Australia’s united TV and news publishing businesses undertook the epic tour, showcasing their combined NRL and AFL expertise to footy fans across the country.

The event at Prahran’s Flying Duck Hotel in Melbourne caps off the four-week tour, which has visited 10 towns in three states and engaged thousands of footy fans at school visits, footy clinics and expert footy panels at local pubs in each location.

Building on the success of the original tour in Victoria last year, Foxtel and News Corp Australia again joined forces with the stars of Fox League, Fox Footy and footy writers from Australia’s most-read newspapers to stage the roadshow as part of an expanded Full-On Footy Tour.

Fox Full-On Footy Tour panellists Lehmo, Jonathan Brown and Mick Malthouse with a replica of the 2018 AFL Premiership Cup. Picture: Ian Currie

Former NRL and AFL greats and the faces of Foxtel’s dedicated Rugby League and AFL channels along with News Corp’s top footy writers visited regional centres including Newcastle, Wollongong, Bathurst, Townsville, Cairns, Sunshine Coast, Geelong, Ballarat, Bendigo and Melbourne.

Viewers and readers were invited to register to attend the free events which were held at schools and Foxtel venues across the eastern seaboard.

NRL icons Matty Johns, Gorden Tallis, Justin Hodges, Corey Parker, Bryan Fletcher and Nathan Hindmarsh along with League Life hosts Jess Yates and Hannah Hollis visited Queensland and New South Wales and met fans on the NRL tour.

Some of AFL’s biggest names, including Jonathan Brown, Dermott Brereton, Nick Riewoldt, Garry Lyon, Jason Dunstall, David King and Paul Roos, joined Fox Footy’s Sarah Jones and Kelli Underwood as part of the AFL tour.

Also attending was MD of commercial for HWT Peter Zavecz and he was joined by some of the editorial team from the Herald Sun – head of sport Matthew Kitchin and editorial business manager Tom Salom.

It’s a busy couple of days for Zavecz who front up with 1699 other people at the World’s Longest Lunch today, which launches the Melbourne Food and Wine festival. The Herald Sun is one of the event partners.

Fox Full-On Footy Tour panellists: Melbourne ruckman Max Gawn (centre) with a replica of the 2018 AFL Premiership Cup and (from left) David King, Sam Edmunds, Jonathan Brown, Lehmo, Mick Malthouse and Mark Robinson. Picture: Ian Currie

In addition to the Herald Sun, other News Corp Australia newspapers supported the tour across print and online including The Daily Telegraph in NSW, the Townsville Bulletin, Cairns Post and Sunshine Coast Daily in Qld and Geelong Advertiser in Victoria.

In Melbourne, a star-studded panel – moderated by the Herald Sun’s Sam Edmund – featured chief football writer and AFL 360 co-host Mark Robinson, new recruit columnist Max Gawn, three-time premiership coach and columnist Mick Malthouse, plus Fox Footy’s Jonathan Brown and David King.

Top photo: St Kilda champion Nick Riewoldt with kids at Pleasant Street Primary School in Ballarat as part of the Full-On Footy Tour. Picture: Ian Currie. Source: News Corp Australia

Andrew Mercado: An open letter to Jane Kennedy regarding TV reboots

Dear Jane Kennedy,

Last Monday’s front page headline in The Australian had me reaching for the wallet when I saw a headline suggesting Frontline might be coming back to TV.

Now, I have been campaigning about this for years (just ask Jonesy and Amanda, although Jonesy would prefer Cops LAC to return) but the timing could not be more perfect now. The 90s are back, baby, and TV series like Will & Grace, Roseanne and Murphy Brown are all picking up where they left off (even if that involves re-writing a bit of history… like Will & Grace’s kids and Dan Connor’s death).

The Age’s Karl Quinn recently wondered which Aussie series should come back and he suggested Heartbreak High (sure), Chances (um, no) and E Street (hell yeah, but what about Pacific Drive too – hope you still treasure your autographed Trey Devlin fan card). Anyway, no surprise that Quinn’s top pick was Frontline, which he described as “one of the best comedies to ever come out of this country”. Ditto that.

TV has changed a lot since Frontline but tabloid TV is still strong. Back then, there was Real Life, Hinch and Today Tonight but today, only A Current Affair and 60 Minutes survive. I agree with you that Tracey Grimshaw is brilliant but how do you send that up? Luckily, during the past 25 years there was also Naomi Robson, so put a lizard on your shoulder and pull out those shoulder pads again, because Frontline would now be hosted by Brooke Vandenberg.

You joked that Brooke probably has her own show on Sky “very late on a Friday night” where she has to “do her own hair and makeup” (could she also have to share a bathroom with Andrew Bolt and Alan Jones?). Maybe something happens to Brooke on some celeb reality show (so tragic it even features the Oldfields) and that opens the door for her to return to Frontline. Come on, you know you want to do this – who wouldn’t want to play Brooke Vandenberg when she gets to be the star and therefore, ever more monstrous than before?

Is Mike Moore (Rob Sitch) working for CNN overseas but looking for any excuse to return? Has Marty Di Stasio (Tiriel Mora) been reduced to doing infomercials? Can you please bring back publicist Jan Whelan (Genevieve Mooy)? And might someone have a fashion-mad son who wears skirts and handles Frontline’s social media while waiting for his big break … Christian Wilkins would be perfect for it.

Can’t wait to see Frontline’s version of 60 Minutes does Beirut, but what about the gender pay gap (Lisa Wilkinson), skits on Sunrise (like their all-white panels talking about indigenous issues or Samantha Armytage playing Samantha on Sex And The City opposite a horrified Kristin Davis) and Studio 10’s infamous Christmas shoot (involving Denise Drysdale, Ita Buttrose and some brussels sprouts). Plus, don’t forget, all these shows love a reality TV “controversy”, so you can send up all the shows you love too.

Jane, you did tell The Australian’s Stephen Brook in his podcast that preliminary talks were “interesting” so you’d better not be teasing me too. Frontline 2.0 is a no-brainer so I will stop pressuring you when Working Dog starts those scripts. And after that, how about D Generation: The Next Generation?

[insert insincere Brooke Vandenberg sign-off here]

Andrew Mercado

Spectator: Mix102.3’s VIP Secret Garden at Adelaide Fringe Festival

ARN’s Mix102.3 treated 100 lucky listeners to Adelaide’s best kept secret last night: the Mix102.3 Secret garden, which was hidden within the Adelaide Fringe Festival’s Garden of Unearthly Delights.

The event, hosted by breakfast show hosts Jodie & Soda, featured a hidden pop-up bar, unlimited St Louis ice cream and delicious burgers cooked by MKR’s Tim and Kyle.

The Garden of Unearthly Delights officially wraps up this weekend. Check out some pics from last night below.

Mix 102.3’s Street Crew – Grace Redden, Alex Craig, Sarah Parker, Ruby Genborg

Mix 102.3’s Jodie & Soda

NZ Media News: Sky TV, Stuff closures, National Business Review, Radio NZ, The Newsroom

Mediaweek’s John Drinnan rounds up the latest media news from the NZ market.


Sky TV chief executive John Fellet (pictured above) has played down any potential risk from Australian pay TV operator Fetch considering a foray into New Zealand, while not ruling out bidding for rugby rights. “We have competition from Netflix and Lightbox, now supposedly Amazon or Google. Fetch is just another.” Sky faces negotiations to continue Rugby rights past 2020, but Fellet told the NZ Herald he will “not be losing any sleep” over the potential competition from Fetch.


National Business Review owner Todd Scott has taken a high profile on social media, attacking advertising agency media buyers who have cut spending on NBR since it stopped paying agency commissions. NBR news contract video anchor Simon Dallow has said his boss should “tone it down”, but Scott says he will continue to say what he believes. Scott said he withdrew from commissions over frustration with “junior” agency buyers who did not understand NBR. NBR has also stopped running share tables from the NZX, saying it will be using three pages for more news stories.

News pundits

State broadcaster Radio New Zealand is reviewing its processes for using lobbyists and PR people as pundits. Questions were raised in Parliament by the Opposition National Party over use of the prime minister’s undeclared PR staffer on the afternoon current discussion show, The Panel. Prime Minister Jacinta Ardern’s partner Clarke Gayford is also a commentator on The Panel. RNZ radio boss Dave Allen said a review process to deal with conflicts of interest was timely.

RNZ’s move is amidst political scientists’ media campaign on a revolving door between politics, lobbying and PR and media political commentary. An academic and former pundit himself, Dr Bryce Edwards criticised media presenting lobbyists and PR as independent commentators, with little scrutiny over potential conflicts of interest. Amidst Edwards’s campaign, the National Business Review ended its contract with the lobbyist and popular political columnist Matthew Hooton, while insisting there was no question about his independence. On leaving NBR, Hooton was quickly signed by the NZ Herald.


Stuff has confirmed five titles are to close among the 28 community, rural papers and magazines named as being under review last month. Chief executive Sinead Boucher said the Christchurch Mail, Napier Mail, Hastings Mail, North Waikato News and Discovery Magazine will close by April 28. Stuff was committed to finding buyers for the remaining 23 titles if possible.


Fairfax-owned Stuff is getting mixed reviews for linking a sexual harassment campaign to the international #MeToo movement. The campaign fronted by high profile broadcaster and feminist Alison Mau. Stuff chief executive Sinead Boucher has been a cheerleader for the campaign and it was welcomed by feminist activist groups and many women journalists. However, some journalists with rival media group NZME have questioned the links with the activist campaign, the commercial imperatives and its ability to make allegations against individuals in complex abuse claims.


RNZ has raised eyebrows signing a copy-sharing agreement with a left-of-centre liberal opinion website, The Spinoff. RNZ has long been criticised by the Opposition National Party as “Red Radio”. Tensions are comparable with those between the Liberal-National Party coalition and the ABC. RNZ sees copy sharing providing a way to reduce opposition from commercial media. Most deals are one way to use RNZ content, but this will also be run by Spinoff as opinion content on its taxpayer-funded websites.

Digital news

The independent news website The Newsroom expected to meet its target for 100,000 monthly uniques on its one-year birthday on March 12. Details of Nielsen figures will be released later today. The website – owned by former NZ Herald editor-in-chief Tim Murphy and former MediaWorks news director Mark Jennings – has marked its birthday with praise for unveiling high profile scandals about sex harassment in the legal establishment, and abuse of four 16-year-olds at a Labour Party political camp. Newsroom now has 16 staff.

NZ Media Profile: NZ Film Commission CEO Annabelle Sheehan

The newly appointed chief executive of the New Zealand Film Commission Annabelle Sheehan is not the first example of cross-fertilisation in public sector screen production bodies.

By John Drinnan

Sheehan took over the New Zealand role at the start of this year, having spent three years at the South Australian Film Corporation.

It is the latest step in a screen industry career that has encompassed post-production, talent management and a key role in the education sector.

At the NZFC, Sheehan replaces the businessman Dave Gibson who overhauled the film body with incentives and who developed New Zealand co-production ties with China.

From 2009 to 2013 the NZFC was run by Australian film executive Graeme Mason after replacing Dr Ruth Harley.

There has been plenty cross-pollination of acting talent between the two countries – John Clark, Sam Neill, John Bach among them – people who were drawn to the scale of Australian TV.

Sheehan is wary of comparing the two countries and there are close links. But those ties have not translated into increased official co-productions between the neighbours.

Like her predecessors at the NZFC, Sheehan sees potential for closer ties. There are differences as well as similarities.

During three years at the SAFC, Sheehan committed to aboriginal film. Maori stories like Boy, Whale Rider and Once Were Warriors have worked for the NZFC both critically and in box office returns.

“New Zealand has incredibly strong Maori culture and Maori filmmakers,” Sheehan told Mediaweek. “It has been shown in research that audiences want to see a much richer diversity of stories and people on-screen and the importance of first nation stories. There is an opportunity for more official co-productions,” she said.

“New Zealand is an open country – really proud and funny and it has a great sense of irony.”

National incentives to attract overseas productions are broadly similar to those in Australia.

“Screen is such a global industry – the policies in New Zealand can be similar to what they are in other countries, with similar issues over the role of streaming and content played on so many platforms.”

Australia and New Zealand compete with one another to draw overseas productions to their countries, with the NZFC leading the charge at this end.

“New Zealand has a fantastic record of attracting major productions that have played a big role developing the capacity of the industry. We also have fantastic work coming out of Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh,” Sheehan said.

Overall, Sheehan eschews comparisons between the Tasman neighbours. The New Zealand film industry is lightly regulated an largely un-unionised.

TV Ratings Analysis: Thursday March 15

• Seven wins second night primary and combined share with MKR and Ramsay
• Nine #1 in Sydney all week, even with NRL and Footy Shows it’s #2 network

By James Manning


Home and Away was solid as a rock in mid-600,000s for the first three nights of the week and Thursday wrapped up its week on 586,000.

Group 1 embarked on a picnic challenge on My Kitchen Rules. The Thursday episode did 945,000 after 954,000 a week ago. Group 1 was tasked with putting together picnic baskets for around 200 people to enjoy in Centennial Park. Each basket was to include dishes with appeal to families and friends of all ages. Josh and Nic were voted the best while Alex and Emily will have to return to the elimination house.

Three hours of Gordon Ramsay followed again with part two of Gordon Ramsay On Cocaine kicking off the festival of F-bombs on 415,000.

Ramsay’s Hotel Hell visited a haunted hotel in the US with 225,000 watching.

Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares USA then closed proceedings on 135,000.


Four markets got A Current Affair last night (no Brisbane) with the show doing 579,000 featuring stories on social media fitness gurus and ice-addicted grannies.

Round 2 of Nine’s NRL coverage featured St George winning over Cronulla. The two-market audience was 377,000 with 239,000 in Sydney and 138,000 in Brisbane.

Melbourne and other southern markets got RBT on 270,000.

The Footy Show followed with a national audience of 401,000 after 445,000 last week. The Footy Show did just 82,000 in Sydney and 174,000 in Melbourne where hosts Eddie, Bec and Sam were celebrating 700 episodes.


The Honey Badger was the star attraction on The Project with 449,000 watching the next Bachelor Nick Cummins interviewed about his new TV challenge.

A 2017 Montreal comedy special followed (how many of these are there?) hosted by Tommy Little with 317,000 watching.

Gogglebox episode six investigated Manu’s Road Trip, Selling Houses Australia and Safe Harbour. Like many of the 4m watching TV daily, they couldn’t keep away from Married At First Sight. After a cracking audience of close to 200,000 on Wednesday on Foxtel, this episode did 554,000 on TEN with a top 10 finish.

Two episodes of Blue Bloods followed with audiences of 215,000 and 149,000.


There were three back-to-back British dramas after 8pm:

Call The Midwife on 491,000.

Unforgotten on 349,000.

The Good Karma Hospital with final episode of the repeat season on 192,000.


Great British Railway Journeys did 224,000 at 7.30pm.

SBS World News was the second most-watched program with 130,000.

The launch episode of Luke Nguyen’s Food Trail followed with 119,000.

How To Lose Weight Well was then on 101,000, followed by Knightfall on 73,000.

Week 11 TV: Thursday
ABC Seven Nine Ten SBS
ABC 12.1% 7 22.5% 9 19.3% TEN 12.1% SBS One 3.8%
ABC 2 2.7% 7TWO 3.9% GO! 2.5% ONE 3.3% VICELAND 1.2%
ABC ME 0.7% 7mate 3.9% GEM 1.8% ELEVEN 2.3% Food Net 1.2%
ABC News 1.7% 7flix 2.7% 9Life 2.0% NITV 0.3%
TOTAL 17.3% 32.9% 25.6% 17.7% 6.5%
ABC Seven Affiliates Nine Affiliates Ten Affiliates SBS
ABC 11.2% 7 21.9% 9 19.2% WIN 10.9% SBS One 2.8%
ABC 2 2.9% 7TWO 6.1% GO! 2.4% ONE 3.7% VICELAND 1.3%
ABC ME 1.1% 7mate 4.7% GEM 2.3% ELEVEN 2.4% Food Net 1.0%
NEWS 24 1.6% 7flix 2.8% 9Life 1.5% NITV 0.2%
TOTAL 16.8% 35.5% 25.4% 17.0% 5.3%
83.3% 16.7%
Thursday fta
  1. My Kitchen Rules Seven 945,000
  2. Seven News Seven 921,000
  3. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 850,000
  4. Nine News Nine 791,000
  5. Nine News 6:30 Nine 783,000
  6. ABC News ABC 693,000
  7. Home And Away Seven 586,000
  8. A Current Affair Nine 579,000
  9. Gogglebox Ten 554,000
  10. 7.30 ABC 538,000
  11. The Chase Australia Seven 502,000
  12. Call The Midwife ABC 491,000
  13. The Project 7pm Ten 449,000
  14. Hot Seat Nine 424,000
  15. Gordon Ramsay On Cocaine Seven 415,000
  16. The Footy Show Nine 401,000
  17. Ten Eyewitness News First At Five Ten 398,000
  18. Thursday Night NRL Live Nine 377,000
  19. Unforgotten ABC 349,000
  20. The Chase Australia-5pm Seven 321,000
Demo top fives

16-39 Top 5

  1. My Kitchen Rules Seven 213,000
  2. Gogglebox Ten 176,000
  3. The Project 7pm Ten 132,000
  4. Seven News Seven 127,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 122,000


18-49 Top 5

  1. My Kitchen Rules Seven 369,000
  2. Gogglebox Ten 282,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 217,000
  4. Gordon Ramsay On Cocaine Seven 209,000
  5. Seven News Seven 204,000


25-54 Top 5

  1. My Kitchen Rules Seven 427,000
  2. Gogglebox Ten 326,000
  3. Nine News 6:30 Nine 263,000
  4. Seven News Seven 251,000
  5. Seven News / Today Tonight Seven 242,000
Thursday multichannel
  1. Peppa Pig-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 152,000
  2. Thomas And Friends-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 152,000
  3. Fireman Sam-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 150,000
  4. PJ Masks-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 145,000
  5. Floogals-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 144,000
  6. Shaun The Sheep ABCKIDS/COMEDY 143,000
  7. Hey Duggee-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 143,000
  8. Peppa Pig-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 142,000
  9. Ben And Holly’s Little Kingdom-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 141,000
  10. The Hive-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 139,000
  11. Spicks And Specks ABCKIDS/COMEDY 138,000
  12. Noddy Toyland Detective-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 137,000
  13. Octonauts ABCKIDS/COMEDY 137,000
  14. M- Oblivion-PM 7mate 136,000
  15. Dot. ABCKIDS/COMEDY 136,000
  16. Dinosaur Train-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 134,000
  17. The Justine Clarke Show!-AM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 134,000
  18. Brewster The Rooster-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 134,000
  19. Kazoops!-PM ABCKIDS/COMEDY 133,000
  20. Father Brown-PM 7TWO 133,000
Thursday subscription tv
  1. Live: NRL Sharks v Dragons FOX LEAGUE 233,000
  2. The Great Australian Bake Off LifeStyle Channel 130,000
  3. Live: The Late Show With Matty Johns FOX LEAGUE 107,000
  4. Live: NRL Thursday Night League FOX LEAGUE 88,000
  5. Selling Houses Australia LifeStyle Channel 74,000
  6. Grand Designs New Zealand LifeStyle Channel 64,000
  7. Gold Rush Discovery Channel 53,000
  8. Outback Opal Hunters Discovery Channel 53,000
  9. Paul Murray Live SKY NEWS LIVE 44,000
  10. PML Overtime SKY NEWS LIVE 42,000
  11. The Big Bang Theory COMEDY CHANNEL 38,000
  12. Puppy Dog Pals Disney Junior 37,000
  13. The Bolt Report SKY NEWS LIVE 36,000
  14. The Longest Day FOX Classics 36,000
  15. NRL Sharks v Dragons FOX LEAGUE 35,000
  16. The Big Bang Theory COMEDY CHANNEL 33,000
  17. Hawaii Five-0 TVH!TS 33,000
  18. NCIS TVH!TS 32,000
  19. Selling Houses Australia LifeStyle Channel 31,000
  20. Judge Judy ARENA 30,000

Media News Roundup

Business Of Media

Beam me up: reports Foxtel cable subscribers to get satellite dishes

Foxtel has confirmed plans to move all cable subscribers to satellite delivery, reports EFTM’s Trevor Long.

Foxtel group director of corporate affairs Bruce Meagher has confirmed the migration plan to telling Long: “Foxtel is moving to satellite only delivery for its broadcast subscribers while also significantly increasing its presence as a video streaming service.

“In the future, the NBN will fully manage the HFC [hybrid fibre coaxial] network to deliver broadband services. Satellite is the best option for high quality video images watched on the large screens in homes and other venues. IP-delivered streaming services are clearly the delivery mode of choice for individuals watching on a range of devices in and out of home. Foxtel is able to offer the best of both.”

When asked about the difference in service from HFC to satellite for customers, Meagher told EFTM: “Satellite is less prone to outages than the HFC cable and delivers great quality HD signals. iQ2 and iQ3 boxes can be connected to the internet to deliver a range of services such as streaming video, Start Over and Look Back.”

[Read the original]

Alex Parsons new Adcorp CEO: Former Nine Entertainment Co CDO to run agency

Locally owned and operated ad agency Adcorp announced to the ASX earlier this week the appointment of Alex Parsons as chief executive officer and managing director, effective March 13 2018.

Alex Parsons

Parsons takes over from the current CEO, David Morrison, who will remain on the Adcorp board and focus on the company’s investments in Showrunner and Shootsta, as well as the Western Australian operations in his new role as managing director of Showrunner Productions Pty Ltd and general manager of Adcorp WA.

Talking about his new role, Parsons said: “There is a strong willingness and desire from the board to create and implement a new vision, strategy and operating plan for the future and in doing so capitalise on the work the team has been doing to improve the fundamentals of the existing business.”

Parsons goes to Adcorp after three years at Nine Entertainment Co where he became chief digital officer. During that time he was also a director of, IAB Australia, Pedestrian.TV and

Parsons is also co-founder and a director of online meat provider The Meat Society, which promises customers restaurant quality at supermarket prices with free delivery.

WIN owner Bruce Gordon hires new lawyers to sue for the return of missing millions

Television mogul Bruce Gordon has hired new lawyers to sue for the return of millions of dollars allegedly stolen by a solicitor working for his old law firm, reports News Corp’s Ian Paterson.

But the man accused of stealing the money, Brody Clarke, is trying to fight a court freeze on the accounts allegedly containing the ill-gotten proceeds, arguing he needs cash to pay his legal bills.

Gordon, the owner of the WIN TV network, has launched civil action in the NSW Supreme Court after almost $10 million was allegedly siphoned from the Bermuda-based businessman’s private company Birketu Pty Ltd by Clarke to fund his gambling habit.

Clarke worked for top legal firm Atanaskovic Hartnell Lawyers, which handled much of Gordon’s business.

Birketu is also suing Deutsche Bank, which managed the accounts from which the money disappeared.

[Read the original]

US broadcaster iHeartRadio’s parent company iHeartMedia files for US bankruptcy

US broadcaster iHeartRadio’s parent company, iHeartMedia, filed for US bankruptcy protection in an attempt to restructure part of the US$20 billion debt load that has burdened it since a leveraged buyout a decade ago, on the eve of the 2008 recession, reports The New York Times.

Credit: Shutterstock

The company announced that it had reached agreements with creditors to reduce its debt by more than $10 billion. It said it would continue to operate its stations during the process.

According to court filings, iHeartMedia, known as Clear Channel Communications until 2014, paid $1.4 billion last year in interest on its debts. Its media division, which includes the broadcast stations, a popular music app and a unit that syndicates shows by Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and others, had $3.6 billion in revenue and $735 million in operating income.

[Read the original]

News Brands

Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest drops defamation case against Reuters and Aussie reporter

Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest’s defamation case against Reuters and its deputy Australian bureau chief Jonathan Barrett appears to have, after several months, spluttered to a halt, reports AFR Rear Window columnist Myriam Robin.

According to court files, the case was discontinued last Thursday.

Forrest had sued Barrett, a former Perth bureau chief for The AFR, and his new employer Reuters after a May 17 story that claimed Forrest had used laws designed to protect indigenous land to stop others searching for minerals on his cattle farms.

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The Press Council upholds Bob Brown’s complaints about Daily Telegraph report

The Press Council has adjudicated on a complaint made by former Greens senator Bob Brown about articles published in The Daily Telegraph.

The complaint concerned two articles published on March 17 2017 in The Daily Telegraph. The first article was headed “Triggs’ Gig For Greens” on the front page, and continued on page four headed “Human rights chief not partial to impartiality”. The second article, on page 13, was headed “Trigg-Hugger: Human Rights Chief A Greenie Disgrace”, also published online headed “Sharri Markson: Gillian Triggs has revealed her true colour … and it’s green”. That opinion article was followed with an editorial on page 64, headed “Forget politics and concentrate on job”.

Brown said the articles were inaccurate, misleading, unfair and unbalanced in a number of key respects.

The Press Council subsequently found that The Daily Telegraph had breached four general principles of the Council’s standards of practice.

Read the Press Council summary, which The Daily Telegraph has published.

The Times of London embarks on a machine-learning project to grow subs

To accelerate subscriptions growth and reduce churn, The Times of London and Sunday Times are embarking on an ambitious machine-learning project, reports Digiday.

The News UK-owned publisher is developing its own self-learning algorithm to serve subscribers the kind of content most relevant to them based on their reading patterns, at the time and frequency most suited to their habits. This algorithm will essentially act as a “digital butler”, serving up content to individuals in the way and format that best suits them. Internally, staffers refer to the butler as James.

The plan is not just to serve relevant content to subscribers and readers who have registered to the Times, but for James to ingest all customer data, including information on customers’ propensity to convert to subscribers, as well as churn propensity.

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After Mix Adelaide exploded to 16% share, ARN moves content guru Sue Carter to Gold

Just days after recording the best performance at any metro radio station in Australia in the survey results, ARN today has appointed Mix Adelaide content director Sue Carter to the role of content director for Melbourne’s GOLD104.3.

Sue Cartner

Carter joined ARN in 2015 and has played a significant role in keeping Mix102.3 Adelaide’s favourite station.

ARN has appointed Tony Aldridge to replace Carter as content director for both MIX102.3 and Cruise 1323 in Adelaide. Aldridge is originally from the UK where he has had a long career in radio. Most recently, he has worked with Nova in Sydney. He will start in Adelaide on March 19.

ARN national content director Duncan Campbell said: “Sue has been a valued member of the team in Adelaide and a key part of Mix102.3’s ongoing success, so I know she will be an excellent addition to GOLD104.3’s team in Melbourne ahead of the launch of Christian O’Connell’s breakfast show on June 4.

“I am pleased to welcome Tony Aldridge to ARN. His depth of knowledge and experience in radio will be a great asset to the Adelaide team.”

Carter said: “I’m excited to be taking on this new role at GOLD104.3 and look forward to being part of a team that delivers innovative and engaging content for Melbourne audiences.”

Carter has extensive experience both overseas and in Australia having worked for international radio brands including UTV in Ireland as well as GWR, GGap and JACKfm in the UK. During her career, Carter has held a range of key roles including sponsorship and promotions manager, content director, breakfast producer and presenter, news editor, creative director and executive producer.

Carter will start in the role of GOLD104.3’s content director on April 9.


Seven secures Joel Creasey to host FremantleMedia Australia’s Take Me Out

Seven yesterday announced that comedian Joel Creasey will be the host of its forthcoming dating series from FremantleMedia Australia, Take Me Out.

Joel Creasey

“Across the world, Take Me Out is just so much ridiculous fun, a hilarious and wild ride. Take Me Out is like a front row seat to the awkward moment when a guy walks up to a woman at a bar. Pass me the popcorn… and something alcoholic, waiter!” said Creasey.

“I’ve had my fair share of bad dates, and I know how important it is to kick it off right… on national TV, in front of a live crowd! I can’t wait to help Australians strike that match and let the love in on Take Me Out. I also can’t wait to make my debut on Channel Seven! Joel Creasey on Channel Seven? Watch out, Kochie… I’m coming in hot!”

Jonathon Summerhayes, director of programming for FremantleMedia Australia, said: “There is no one like Joel Creasey hosting on Australian television. He is outrageous, lightning-fast and whip-smart, just like the show itself. Take Me Out with Joel at the helm will have a totally fresh, edgy energy and his ability to relate to the singles will shine. He’s the perfect modern matchmaker.”

Foxtel and Amazon among the 150 FMI deals that bought new American Idol

FremantleMedia International has announced deals for the new series of American Idol in 150 territories. The series, which launched on the ABC network in the US following a break of several years after a long run on the Fox Network, also launched on Foxtel in Australia this week.

American Idol season 16 judges Lionel Richie, Katy Perry, Ryan Seacrest and Luke Bryan

The latest deal to have been completed is with Amazon Prime Video UK, which will see American Idol air exclusively in the UK two days after it first airs in the US. The series airs on Foxtel just hours after its US screenings.

On the deal, Jamie Lynn, EVP, head of sales and distribution, EMEA for FremantleMedia International, said: “American Idol has launched to fantastic ratings on ABC in the US and we are excited that Amazon Prime Video will become the exclusive home of the new series in the UK with this unique deal. To see one of the biggest entertainment shows on a streaming service is a not only a first, but testament to the appetite for American Idol and will be a whole new way to reach fans of the series.”

FremantleMedia International’s global sales team have secured a multitude of new international deals for the new season of the entertainment series with CTV (Canada), Foxtel (Australia), Canal Sony (Latin America), MNET (Africa), SIC (Portugal and Portuguese-speaking Africa), Intervision (Greece), Three (New Zealand), Fjarskipti (Iceland), Novalifε (Greece), Sia All Media (Lithuania), Marjan Television (Farsi-speaking MENA), beIN (MENA) and beIN Series Home&Entertainment (Turkey).

American Idol is produced by FremantleMedia North America and Core Media Group’s 19 Entertainment. Executive producers include FremantleMedia North America’s Trish Kinane and Jennifer Mullin, along with executive producer Phil McIntyre representing Core Media. FremantleMedia International distributes the series worldwide.

Sports Media

Tennis Australia calls for bids for broadcast rights to be lodged by April 12

Tennis Australia sent out its “requests for proposals” broadcast tender document to networks on Wednesday this week, calling for interested parties to submit bids by April 12, creating competitive tension with Cricket Australia, whose tender was sent out last week with bids due by 5pm this coming Monday, report The AFR’s Max Mason and John Stensholt.

The tennis rights could be worth $250m-$300m over five years, although Tennis Australia has not outlined a length of contract.

Tennis Australia’s exclusive negotiating period with Seven West Media lapsed this week, but the Kerry Stokes-controlled business still remains the favourite to retain the rights it has held for four decades.

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Greg Rust joins PodcastOne to produce a new automotive series Rusty’s Garage

Motorsports broadcaster Greg Rust has joined PodcastOne to produce a new automotive podcast series titled Rusty’s Garage. In the first series, available from March 19, Rusty speaks to riders, drivers, racers, designers and even pilots about the machines that fuel their passion.

Greg Rust

Head of podcasting for PodcastOne Australia Grant Tothill said: “Rusty is a true motorsport enthusiast and commentator, he is a master of his craft and we are pleased to have him join PodcastOne to tell some of these extraordinary stories.”

Supercars drivers Garth Tander and seven-time champion Jamie Whincup feature along with Bathurst 1000 winner Greg Murphy. Australian Rally Champion Molly Taylor has an engaging chat with Rusty, and so does Air Race pilot Matt Hall.

Rusty’s Garage is available from Monday March 19 via, the PodcastOne app or iTunes.

Seven secures FIA World Rally Championship deal with 15 hours of coverage

Seven has announced a FIA World Rally Championship deal for Australia with more than 15 hours of coverage on free-to-air television in 2018.

7mate will broadcast one-hour highlights from every round, plus live coverage of the championship finale at Kennards Hire Rally Australia on the Coffs Coast on November 15-18.

Rally Guanajuato Mexico will be the first WRC round shown on 7mate, on Wednesday March 28, with encore broadcasts scheduled on March 29 and March 31. Remaining rounds will be scheduled for first runs on Wednesdays after each event.

At Kennards Hire Rally Australia, at least 4.5 hours’ weekend coverage is expected to feature three live stages, including the season-ending Power Stage, a high-drama, points-paying shootout that may decide the overall outcome of the event or the season.

WRC programming will be complemented by coverage of the CAMS Australian Rally Championship and BFGoodrich CAMS Australian Off Road Championship, which also are included in the 7mate schedule.

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