By James Manning
Just two months after replacing Tim Worner, Warburton has acquired Prime Media and sold Redwave Media and now Pacific Magazines.
Bauer Media CEO Brendon Hill hadn’t been involved in many of the past discussions, but he sounded happy with the deal when speaking about it on Monday.
“I’m just glad we’ve got it done now. It is great for the industry and makes [Bauer] a much more sustainable business,” Hill told Mediaweek.
Outgoing Pacific Magazines chief executive Gereurd Roberts has done a good job stabilising earns at the Seven West Media division. He managed to maintain a group of brands that perform well enough for Bauer Media to want them all.
“We think all the Pacific titles work very well in our portfolio,” said Hill. “There is not a lot of crossover in readership between the titles. The size of our combined digital audiences also gives us the chance to better compete with the global digital giants.”
While many of the Pacific titles are published under license, on completion of the deal Bauer will own outright New Idea, Home Beautiful and That’s Life. “They are three big titles and very significant to us.”
Hill explained Bauer Media had spoken with Meredith already about the Better Homes & Gardens license and a deal had been agreed. Meredith also owns InStyle.
Bauer still needs to finalise licensing deals with Hearst (for the Men’s Health and Women’s Health brands) and Group Marie Claire.
About staff who will move across to Park Street to work at Bauer, Hill said those details had yet to be finalised. “At this stage we expect the staff to move to Park Street where they will start afresh in a new, bigger business. There could be some consolidation in the back-office functions. These Pacific magazines are unique and we will need the editorial staff to create them.”
Hill said the upside for Bauer’s expanded portfolio was getting more revenue stability and be able to reinvest, “to be able to grow this industry again. We can invest more into higher quality content and more into digital development to continue growing our audiences. That is key for our advertisers – bigger audiences on more channels.” Hill said the combined audience for their digital properties will be around 12m. “We will be able to do better content marketing and use data much better.”
Hill said he was happy to see Andrew Cook returning to the business. “He will be great at bringing the Bauer and Pacific teams together and making it work for our clients.” See separate item on Cook’s return to magazine publishing.
Departing sales boss Paul Gardiner is returning with his family to New Zealand to take up a CEO role at a yet-to-be-revealed public company.
Hill: “We will now be able to service our advertising clients better with more resources across our sales teams and our research departments and content divisions. It will be more efficient for agencies to be able to deal with one point of contact.”
Hill is well aware that for magazines to thrive they need to have a strong relationship with retailers – from supermarkets to independent newsagencies. To that end he will be visiting the annual newsagent’s conference on the Gold Coast later this week. “We will be talking about how we perhaps need to invest more in their channel to help them thrive. We also want to make sure we continue to have a close relationship with Coles and Woolworths.”
Sydney’s queen of public relations innovation Dionne Taylor launched her firm – Polkadot Communications – over a decade ago, and the business continues to flourish.
By Claudia Siron
With her premium PR skills and media know-how, Taylor has recently released an app that will revolutionise the way journalists, brands, influencers and PR agencies communicate and collaborate with eachother. Taylor shared with Mediaweek recent success stories with her thriving business, more on her new app Story Match, and big plans for the future.
Years ago, Taylor made the switch from journalism to public relations and launched Polkadot Communications in 2006. With her business turning 14 next year, there is a lot to celebrate.
Taylor told Mediaweek what differentiates Polkadot Communications to other PR firms, and how they continue to ‘thrive and survive’. “We are an agency that represents brands that want to make a difference. Sometimes they’re challenger brands, sometimes they are the market leader. Ultimately, the typical client that we represent are those that are looking for a perception shift and require a strategy to go to market,” said Taylor.
“We are very targeted in our approach and thrive on the relationships we have built with media over the years. We have four main criteria when working with clients; (1) there cannot be a conflict of interest to any client we currently represent, (2) they have to have a good story to tell and something that differentiates them from competitors in the market, (3) they have to benefit from the relationship as much as us – ultimately, we need to make a positive impact on each other’s businesses, (4) we need to have a strong working relationship with the client, we want this to be a shared experience and build rapport,” explained Taylor.
The PR boss said it’s this winning formula that has seen Polkadot Communications retain clients for over a decade, attract top talent, and work with market leaders across multiple sectors. “We are one of the few independent boutique agencies that has survived, and thrived.”
Taylor shared with Mediaweek some recent success stories for her business. “This year we launched Athena Home Loans, which is a market challenger. Overall we achieved over 108 pieces of coverage across TV, radio, online and via socials, culminating in an estimated total reach of over 24.9 million. The company has continued to prosper over the last 8 months since we launched them and we have continued to work with them during this time,” said Taylor.
“This year we also won The Empire State Building who had a competitive pitch to the Australian market looking for representation. We have secured multiple TV segments, newspaper articles, seen some of Australian top celebrities go up the famous building, and have just launched their ‘Reimagine’ campaign including the opening of their 102nd floor observatory.”
Taylor was recently featured on Game Changers, a digital platform founded by Robyn Foyster that profiles entrepreneurs in what is a high-quality three-camera shoot with top interviewers including Edwina Bartholomew and Sarah Harris hosting the show. “Game Changers was an opportunity for me to get in front of so many entrepreneurs who also have great stories to tell. I used Game Changers as a launch platform for Story Match, the app that I have developed that connects brands with relevant members of the media,” said Taylor. “I was interviewed by well-known journalist Edwina Bartholomew who said that Story Match was ‘a game changer’ and “it’s a journalists’ best friend”.
Taylor explained to Mediaweek what Story Match is all about and why it will improve relationships and communication between journalists, brands and public relations. “Story Match started from years of frustration working both as a journalist and as a publicist. My primary business has represented over 500 brands over the last 14 years, and I worked as a journalist two years prior to that. As a journalist, I would receive hundreds of irrelevant press releases every week and fell into the habit of deleting them all. As a publicist, we work for our clients who spend so much money on a communication strategy that has traditionally started with the writing and disseminating of a press release. The releases are long-winded, the media databases are inaccurate, and the ‘spray and pray’ approach simply doesn’t work,” explained Taylor.
“There’s hundreds of PR firms and thousands of brands all competing for media attention. Our industry was not moving fast enough with technology so I wanted to change it. I developed Story Match to break the cycle of story pitching.”
Taylor said the app is a two-sided marketplace that allows journalists to set up profiles based on their industry preferences, so they never receive another press release or pitch they don’t want to read. “It also allows brands who can DIY their own PR and PR professionals to pitch their stories in a targeted way without having to write a press release,” said Taylor.
“If the pitches match on tags, the journalist will see the pitch. If they swipe right (like Tinder) they’ll connect with the person who posted the pitch in a real time live chat, so they can coordinate an interview, images, and more.
“I am future proofing my job as a publicist, and wanted to make a difference to our industry to improve efficiencies and give every brand, no matter what their budget, the chance to be recognised in the media, as the positive impact on a business can be enormous.”
Taylor then revealed future plans for the app and another upcoming business to further improve workflow process. “Story Match is going global. The app will launch in the US in January 2020. The service will become available to the US market through another business I am launching called The PR Loop, which is an online community for PR, marketing and journalism professionals to connect, share and improve workflow. Anyone who signs up to The PR Loop will gain automatic access to Story Match. This will only be the start, as we already have interest in other countries like India who to get on board – the market doesn’t stop at Australia. Ultimately I would like to partner with a major media news distributor to further grow the usage of Story Match.”
Tate told staff he had been in discussion with Lang for some time regarding his future.
Tate added there will be “significant change” ahead as the operations of the Macquarie Media radio group are integrated with those of Nine.
The email was also posted on the ASX and Tate added:
“Nine, as you are aware, is in the process of moving towards 100% ownership and control of Macquarie, and it is expected that the role of Macquarie Media CEO will become redundant under the consequential organisation structure. Until that structure is finalised I will assume responsibility for matters which would otherwise be handled by the CEO.
“Adam has played a major role in the development of Macquarie Media Limited since its formation following the 2015 merger of Macquarie Radio Network and Fairfax Radio Network. Having previously led Fairfax Radio, Adam took on the role of COO of Macquarie Media from its inception, and was promoted to CEO in April 2018.
“Adam and I have worked very closely together over the last 4 years and his passion for radio, his intelligence, his work ethic and his regard for our people, have all been outstanding features of his management and leadership during that time.”
Adam Lang was the chairman of Commercial Radio Australia until the end of last year. Lang was still on the board and attended a board meeting in Brisbane at the end of last week ahead of the annual Radio Alive conference and the ACRAs.
Tate finished with: “On behalf of the Macquarie Media board and staff I want to thank Adam for the huge contribution he has made to our company, and wish him every success in the next stage of his career.”
Lang had recently taken legal action against The Daily Telegraph after a series of articles made claims about his management style.
In the data, news.com.au pushed its audience back above the 10m mark for the month after recording 9.4m during the month of August.
The top five ranking places remained the same month-on-month. All publishers saw their audiences increase with nine.com.au enjoying the biggest increase – up 1m to 8.7m.
The Guardian slipped one spot, down from #6 to #7, but the publisher reported a tagging issue which effected measurement of its audience.
The biggest single increase at any of the publishers was Daily Mail Australia which saw its audience jump 1.617m to 5.421m.
More than a decade since its inception, the Crocmedia-produced AFL Trade Radio has smashed all previous audio, digital and video metrics in a record year of consumption, according to the Melbourne-based content company led by CEO Craig Hutchison.
In 2019, Telstra AFL Trade Radio broadcast 156 hours of radio and 130 hours of live video across AFL.com.au and the AFL Live app; with syndicated windows on 1116 SEN, 1377 SEN+, 1629 SEN SA, SEN.com.au and the SEN app.
Telstra AFL Trade Radio delivered over 3 million audio and video streams on the AFL.com.au and AFL app platforms across 13 days which was a 117% increase year-on-year. Both visual and audio consumption skyrocketed in 2019; consumers spent an average of 68 minutes streaming audio content while they spent an average of 29 minutes consuming video content.
The Crocmedia-produced product had over 2.6 million social video views across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter and a remarkable 33 million Twitter impressions across the trade period.
In the recently released Australian Podcast Ranker, Telstra AFL Trade Radio was the 14th most downloaded and listened to podcast despite only being live for 24 hours in the September ranking period.
Telstra AFL Trade Radio is forecast to poll near the top of the October charts based on such strong figures.
Telstra AFL Trade Radio was the number 1 sport podcast in the country throughout the trade period according to the Apple iTunes Charts (October 2019).
Deadline day was the most trafficked 24 hours of the Telstra AFL Trade Radio period with 737,000 streams and 300,000 unique audience members.
In addition to a digital audience, syndicated Telstra AFL Trade Radio shows on 1116 SEN and 1377 SEN+ reached 180,000 listeners each week*.
Crocmedia chief executive officer Craig Hutchison said:
“Telstra AFL Trade Radio provides unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to key AFL trade deals with expert analysis and insight on them in real time.
“We are very proud of this unique innovation and it was an honour to work with AFL media and all of our brand partners to continue to connect brands to fans.
“A huge effort by the Crocmedia and AFL Media teams, talent, digital content and radio producers in making the 2019 AFL Trade Period the most widely consumed to date.”
*GFK Radio Ratings, Melbourne, Survey 6 2019, Mon-Fri 0900-1200, 1800-1900, cume reach, P10+
On Monday The first season of the Masked Singer came to an end on 10, with the Monster being revealed as Gorgi Coghlan, the Wolf was Rob Mills, and the Robot was Cody Simpson.
Gorgi Coghlan was announced as the second runner up as she was revealed to be the Monster, the Australian television presenter, singer and former scientist is best known for co-hosting 10’s The Circle between 2010 and 2012, and for her work on The Project.
Reducing the panel to tears, an emotional Gorgi said: “Mum has always said to me, why are you wasting that beautiful voice? Mum had a really tough battle with brain cancer 18 months ago. Mum… this is your wish. Here I am.”
— The Masked Singer Australia (@maskedsinger_au) October 21, 2019
The runner up was revealed to be Rob Mills who first came to fame on the first season of Australian Idol in 2003 where he first met Osher Günsberg. Millsy did better on The Masked Singer than he did on Australian Idol where he finished fifth with the Wolf getting to him to within one spot of winning it all.
The man behind Wolf told host Osher Günsberg: “I have been doing Neighbours for the past couple of years and I am always in a studio with a crew and no audience. I needed a stage and I wanted to have some fun.”
— The Masked Singer Australia (@maskedsinger_au) October 21, 2019
For his final solo performance, Robot rocked the house with his performance of Lady Gaga’s The Edge of Glory, and Lindsay Lohan, Jackie O, Dave Hughes and Dannii Minogue took their final stabs at who was behind the Robot mask.
Dave Hughes guessed 5 Seconds Of Summer drummer Ashton Irwin, while Dannii and Jackie were convinced it was Niall Horan or Liam Payne from One Direction fame.
With Cody having dated her sister Aliana, Lohan had a lightbulb moment at the end of his final performance guessing correctly that it was in fact, Cody Simpson.
Simpson said: “I’m mates with Niall and Ashton… I am going to make sure they watch it. This is a top shelfer in the cabinet for sure!”
Simpson will be on The Project on Tuesday to talk about everything from The Masked Singer to Miley Cyrus.
— The Masked Singer Australia (@maskedsinger_au) October 21, 2019
The finishing positions of the Masked singer Australia were:
1. Robot – Cody Simpson
2. Wolf – Rob Mills
3. Monster – Gorgi Coghlan
4. Unicorn – Deni Hines
5. Spider – Paulini
6. Lion – Kate Ceberano
7. Dragon – Adam Brand
8. Prawn – Darren McMullen
9. Rhino – Wendell Sailor
10. Alien – Nikki Webster
11. Parrot – Brett Lee
12. Octopus – Gretel Killeen
The Masked Singer will be back on 10 in 2020 for season 2.
The Joke isn’t getting old as Joker makes it three weeks in a row on top of the Australian box office. It has held off two new entries in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil and Zombieland: Doubletap in a weekend where the Australian box office has declined 26% after making $4.35m.
By Trent Thomas
The films to drop out of the top five this week where the action blockbuster Gemini Man, which was only able to last one week in the top five making $2.43m to date, and Abominable, which slid down to ninth spot after five weeks of release making a total of $8.64m
Ride Like a Girl is the only Australian film in the top five after spending four consecutive weeks among the top five earners which is the most of any Australian film this year.
It has taken only three weeks for the latest film from DC to amass $28.52m as it’s retained the top spot at the Australian box office this past weekend. With a 41% decline on last weekend’s total, the film had an average of 9,828 on 443 screens.
The sequel to the 2014 film based on the character from Charles Perrault’s original fairy tale and Disney’s 1959 animated film Sleeping Beauty finished its opening weekend with the second-highest total at the Australian box office. With Angelina Jolie returning in the titular role the film was the most screened flick in the country on 467 screens averaging $5,411.
Following up from the original 2009 film Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Abigail Breslin, and Emma Stone return for the sequel 10 years later helping the film make the highest screen average of the weekend with $6,718 on 289 screens.
Slipping down to fourth spot in its second week of release, the film’s total now sits at $5.71m after making an average of $5,096 on 316 screens.
The highest-grossing Australian movie of the year with $8.92m keeps on galloping as the true story of Melbourne Cup-winning jockey Michelle Payne continues to draw in Aussie audiences as it averaged $2,620 on 284 screens.
• Huge final of The Masked Singer gives 10 a primary & network win
• As Cody Simpson was revealed as Masked Singer, 1.372m tuned in
• Hell Week on The Block underway – slips to second place behind 10
By James Manning
• Seven News 921,000/901,000
• Nine News 839,000/866,000
• A Current Affair 756,000
• ABC News 631,000
• 7.30 563,000
• The Project 297,000/550,000
• 10 News First 322,000
• The Drum 148,000
• SBS World News 145,000
• Sunrise 282,000
• Today 194,000
Home and Away started a new week on 576,000 after a week 42 average metro audience of 605,000.
Bride and Prejudice: The Forbidden Weddings just made it over 400,000 after 434,000 on Monday last week.
The Rookie did 303,000 followed by S.W.A.T. on 191,000.
Leila McKinnon was guest-hosting A Current Affair with an exclusive Sylvia Jeffreys interview with Jeff Fenech. The episode was on 756,000 after a week 42 average of 672,000.
The Block started Hell Week, which is being labelled the biggest week ever in Block history as the teams finish off the remaining interior of the build – hallways, a media room or study and any remaining powder rooms, laundry, stairs, bedrooms, flooring or skirting. The Monday episode was on 897,000 after 978,000 a week ago.
Love Island Australia then did 312,000.
The broadcaster has taken a double win with a primary and combined channel share victory with its biggest 6.00-10.30pm audience in 12 months.
The Project bumped returning comedy genius Josh Thomas to the first half hour of the show. It was perhaps appropriate the awkward comedian got caught up in an awkward interview that got stuck on his dog without him having time to reveal how he had been building his US career. Later in the show The Masked Singer got the prime spot with Hughesy joining the desk to talk up the final. The episode hit 550,000 after 7pm following a week 42 average of 446,000.
The Masked Singer Australia was the power behind 10’s massive night with 1.050m watching the first part of the Grand Finale. That later grew to 1.372m for the reveal of Cody Simpson as The Masked Singer. The only one of the celebrity panellists who guessed correctly was the one that was thought by some to be a dud pick for the show – Lindsay Lohan.
Have You Been Paying Attention? had been having a great run of episodes over 800,000, now the series has recorded successive weeks over 900,000 – 926,000 last night. Tony Martin stood in for Ed Kavalee and he joined regular Sam Pang plus guests Marty Sheargold, Ash London and Melanie Bracewell.
Tommy Little was then back on after his appearance on The Project, with Just For Laughs on 370,000.
Australia Story featured the amazing story of Jock Palfreeman‘s 12-year fight for freedom from a Bulgarian prison with 508,000 after 659,000 watching a week ago.
Four Corners reporter Michael Brissenden examined Lawyer X and the underbelly murder investigations. The audience of 533,000 got in ahead of much to follow, this and next year, from Sky News, Nine and Foxtel, among others working on Lawyer X projects.
Media Watch then did 487,000, taking the opportunity to have another swing at Kyle Sandilands.
Annabel Crabb guest-hosted Q&A, but some of the Tony Jones regulars didn’t front with 277,000 watching.
The final episode of How the Victorians Built Britain was on 229,000 after 219,000 a week ago.
24 Hours in Emergency then did 214,000 followed by 24 Hours in Police Custody on 147,000.
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.0%||7TWO||3.1%||GO!||2.5%||10 Bold||3.5%||VICELAND||1.0%|
|ABC ME||0.4%||7mate||3.8%||GEM||2.6%||10 Peach||2.0%||Food Net||1.1%|
|7Food||0.4%||SBS World Movies||0.6%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||10 Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC KIDS/ ABC COMEDY||2.4%||7TWO||4.1%||GO!||3.6%||WIN Bold||3.5%||VICELAND||1.3%|
|ABC ME||0.9%||7mate||4.4%||GEM||5.8%||WIN Peach||1.4%||Food Net||1.1%|
|ABC NEWS||0.9%||7flix (Excl. Tas/WA)||1.4%||9Life||1.9%||Sky News on WIN||1.6%||NITV||0.1%|
|7food (QLD only)||0.0%|
|MONDAY METRO ALL TV|
16 – 39
18 – 49
25 – 54
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
Bauer Media has appointed Andrew Cook (pictured) as director of sales, with Paul Gardiner, the current commercial director, departing the business.
Cook joins Bauer Media as director of sales with close to 30 years of experience in Australia’s publishing and broadcast industry. Cook currently sits as general manager of sales for The Australian and the News Prestige Network.
Prior to NewsCorp, he was director of media sales at SBS and worked at ACP Magazines (now Bauer Media) where he held various roles including head of brand sales, and sales director of men’s lifestyle. Cook has also worked at Fairfax on The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sun-Herald.
Brendon Hill, CEO at Bauer Media Australia said: “Andrew is a consummate professional and we are delighted he is joining the Bauer Media business. His outstanding experience across some of Australia’s top media businesses in various management and leadership roles will be a great addition to our executive team.”
Of his new appointment, Andrew Cook commented: “I’m really excited to be joining the leadership team at Bauer, the leading publisher of magazine brands in Australia. I’m looking forward to working with Brendon and the rest of the team in the coming months. I believe Bauer offers a unique opportunity for clients to connect with their deeply engaged audiences across their print, digital, social and event platforms.”
After close to 15 years with Bauer Media in New Zealand and Australia, Paul Gardiner will depart the business and return to New Zealand with his family to take on a new venture.
Brendon Hill, CEO at Bauer Media Australia concluded: “Paul has had a long, successful career at Bauer Media in New Zealand and Australia, and his contribution to the business has been greatly appreciated.
“Paul has been an integral part of many of Bauer Media’s recent achievements, including the launch of Bauer’s commercial content division, Story 54, and several landmark research initiatives establishing Bauer as the leading media company when it comes to understanding women. He has done an outstanding job for the business, and we wish him every success for his next chapter in New Zealand.”
Australia-based media agency Atomic 212 has launched a damages claim against its former chief executive Jason Dooris, accusing him of peddling false allegations that the agency is involved in bribery, fraud and money laundering, reports The Australian’s Deborah Cornwall.
Dooris was forced to resign from Atomic 212 in January last year after media industry news website Mumbrella accused him of making misleading and often wildly exaggerated claims to bag several prestigious media agency awards, for himself and the agency.
Dooris insisted at the time that he had done nothing wrong, but in an internal email, leaked to Mumbrella, agency chairman Barry O’Brien told Dooris he needed to “find a moral compass” and his “bullshit layer” was a “disaster”.
Atomic 212 is also claiming damages from Dooris of $100,000 for each of the three breaches of the disparagement clause in his exit agreement.
When Christian Porter unveiled his new “safeguard” for journalists facing the prospect of criminal charges, it fell well short of what the media was seeking. But its harshest critics might well be the startled leaders of the legal profession, reports The Australian’s Chris Merritt.
Instead of reforming the overzealous use of secrecy laws, the Attorney-General has left those laws in place and simply will decline to enforce them against journalists he will select at his discretion. He has instructed the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions to seek his consent before prosecuting journalists for breaches of four federal secrecy laws.
The CDPP already exercises discretion over which matters justify prosecution but Porter describes the new procedure as “a separate and additional safeguard”. He has said in the past he would be “seriously disinclined” to approve prosecutions of journalists except in the most exceptional circumstances.
If the Attorney-General expected praise for this scheme, it is yet to emerge. The leaders of the legal profession and the media industry have denounced it for introducing a moral hazard that could encourage compliant reporting of federal politics.
Scott Morrison has declared that journalists should not be prosecuted at the “whim of politicians”, a month after Attorney-General Christian Porter gave himself new powers to make the final call to take reporters to court for exposing government secrets, reports The Australian’s Rosie Lewis.
The Prime Minister’s comments came after media organisations launched a united push against government secrecy, issuing heavily redacted front pages to protest against a sustained attack on the rights of journalists to hold governments to account and report the truth to the public.
As media companies demanded six reforms to better protect journalists and whistleblowers, the Prime Minister told parliament Australians did not want to be part of a country where politicians determined prosecutions.
“But if it comes to a position in this country where prime ministers and politicians decide who gets prosecuted and who doesn’t get prosecuted without taking the appropriate advice and without seeing the appropriate release … then that’s not a country that I think Australians would want to live in,” Morrison said.
Splendour in the Grass, Falls Festival and Laneway Festival are among some of the biggest music festivals in the state threatening to leave NSW as the government pushes ahead with legislation for a safety regime ahead of the busy summer season, reports The Sydney Morning Herald’s Lisa Visentin.
The festivals, which also include the Listen Out, Field Day and Groovin the Moo festivals, say they will now “consider their futures in NSW” after failing to secure a commitment from the Berejiklian government to establish a music industry roundtable as part of the proposed new laws.
The Australian Festival Association, which released a joint statement on behalf of the festivals, said the “uncertainty and a lack of meaningful consultation” around the proposed safety measures had had a “punitive effect” on the industry.
Co-director of the Laneway Festival Danny Rogers indicated the festival would be prepared to relocate interstate, as the NSW Parliament prepares to debate the government’s bill this week.
Seven will unveil is Upfronts tomorrow, the first under newly-installed CEO James Warburton, reports TV Tonight.
After a challenging year, Seven will be looking to convince clients the worst is behind them and that 2020 has renewed energy.
At the top of the list is Tokyo Olympics, to be held from July 24 – August 9. Screening with a favourable timezone, this is an event around which all other networks will be forced to schedule.
While Nine and 10 Upfronts have been dominated by renewals, expect Seven to unpack the biggest list of new shows so far. Advertisers will be looking for Seven to rebuild their 7:30 slot.
It is rumoured to be announcing a season of Big Brother, which has previously screened on 10 and Nine. What detail will we get around dates, host and venue? Seven is also planning The Farmer Wants a Wife from Fremantle and more of Little Big Shots.
There have been rumours Matt Preston and Gary Mehigan may front a new cooking show in the second half of 2020, while My Kitchen Rules is expected to confirm one or more series, amid rumours of contestants living under one roof. House Rules is similarly due for an overhaul following cast departures.
There’s much excitement around new Bevan Lee drama Between Two Worlds, starring Hermione Norris, Philip Quast, Sara Wiseman and Aaron Jeffery, tipped for early in the year.
TV Tonight hears whispers Seven will confirm suped-up mini golf contest Holey Moley from Eureka Productions with Aussie contestants doing battle on the course constructed for the US ABC network.
The NRL will consider bringing broadcast production of its matches in-house for the next television rights deal to maximise revenue in a move that would have huge ramifications for its traditional media partners, report The Sydney Morning Herald’s Adrian Proszenko and Chris Barrett.
The existing deal with Foxtel and Nine Entertainment Co doesn’t expire until the end of the 2022 season. However, the governing body is already planning for the next rights negotiations to ensure all options are considered in a rapidly changing media landscape.
The NRL extracted $2 billion from Nine, Foxtel and Telstra to provide coverage of the game over a five-year period, a figure 70 per cent higher than the previous deal. However, changes in technology and viewing habits could result in the value flatlining or even decreasing when the rights are next up for grabs.
Rugby league has long gone with a two-partner model of a free-to-air and subscription provider, with Fox and Nine paying top dollar for a property that has been a sure-fire ratings winner. However, the emergence of streaming service Kayo and a shift to fans consuming sport on mobile devices has further fragmented the market.
The NRL will give its current broadcast partners every opportunity to retain the rights before exploring alternate options. However, according to sources with knowledge of the approaching negotiations, the NRL could produce the broadcast content itself and then look to sell off the properties to interested parties if it isn’t satisfied with the price broadcasters are willing to pay.
There is also the possibility that the NRL could sell off various properties – such as State of Origin, the World and club 9s tournaments, international matches and the All Stars fixture – separately in a bid to extract maximum value.
AFLW players are set to vote on a revised collective bargaining agreement as early as this week after the AFL and the AFL Players’ Association reached an in-principle deal for the next three seasons, reports The Age’s Daniel Cherny.
The immediate future of the competition had been left in limbo after 30 per cent of players voted against a CBA proposal earlier this month. The AFLPA could have ticked-off on the proposal itself but has an unofficial requirement that 75 per cent of the playing cohort must agree to a deal before the union ratifies it.
The AFLPA has since conducted a series of meetings with players from clubs who had a majority vote against. A milestone was reached on Monday when player representatives met members of the PA top brass and an AFL contingent including chief executive Gillon McLachlan.