Crocmedia CEO and co-founder Craig Hutchison took the podium in front of brand partners and agencies last night on the edge of Sydney Harbour, addressing his customers from what he joked was his spiritual home, the Sydney Dance Company.
Hutchy’s PR company Thread had secured a function room that is part of the wharf, home to the Dance Company and the Sydney Theatre Company, for the launch its 2018 season. Guests had uninterrupted views of the Harbour Bridge and across the water and also toward Luna Park on the North Shore.
Crocmedia commentator Russell Barwick hosted the function and introduced the CEO.
“This is not a hard sell tonight,” said Hutchy. He had taken the stage after a presentation reel, also fronted by the company’s biggest asset, which detailed all the different Crocmedia divisions.
“Branded content is at the core of our business and we are very excited about our NRL move.”
There was not much talk about the impending merger with Pacific Star’s 1116 SEN, although the corporate video already lists it as a done deal.
“We are very excited about joining together with Australia’s only 24/7 all sports talk station. That creates another platform or us. It is one of 100+ radio stations we have supplied content to long term.” He did note the deal needs to be ratified by shareholders in two weeks’ time.
Hutchy talked about the national footprint Crocmedia can now offer advertisers. “It grew out of regional Australia, which remains the heart of our DNA. We are honoured to be able to deliver NRL into the heart of regional NSW and Queensland via NRL Nation.”
He noted there are close to 1m NRL fans in regional NSW alone across 30 regional markets.
Hutchy also paid tribute to his business partner Chris Giannopoulos, who not only runs Bravo Talent Management, but put together the NRL deal. “It’s a terribly complicated thing syndicated radio. There is a reason why not many people have done it before. If something goes wrong, 200 station managers ring you at exactly the same time.”
Crocmedia also noted it is only the third commercial broadcaster to carry NRL, and Hutchy said both Macquarie Media and Triple M do a great job with their coverage.
“We will have four NRL games exclusively every week. There are already 40 stations across two states taking our call.
“We want to be a little bit different – contemporary, inclusive, diverse and we will have some fun while being informative.”
Joining guests at the function were many of the Crocmedia NRL team including Blocker Roach, Brenton Speed, Laurie Daley, Brett Kimmorley and Luke Lewis.
Also at the event was Sydney Swans captain Josh Kennedy, who will take part in the Crocmedia AFL call when available.
Hutchy also reminded guests about the AFL calls of the Swans games, which come from the newly renovated 40-seat Ball Park corporate suite from the SCG. As well as hosting the call, the new box even has a McCafé installed!
Photos: Ashley Mar