Southern Cross Austereo CEO Grant Blackley joins Sky News anchor Natalie MacDonald and Mediaweek’s James Manning at 2.30pm today.
Over the past two years, SCA has overhauled the business, rebranding many of its radio stations and divesting some assets to reduce debt. CEO Grant Blackley joins the show to discuss the current media climate and the company’s recent initiatives.
Tune in today at 2.30pm on Sky News Business (Foxtel 602)
• Denton: “I have always had a real regard for Kerry… he’s not like other moguls.”
By James Manning
Andrew Denton is out in market spruiking his return to TV.
His new program interview launches on Seven next Tuesday as one of a raft of programs the network is hoping will help secure its ratings and revenue for the second quarter of calendar 2018 and beyond.
In the second instalment of Mediaweek’s Five Days Of Denton festival, we asked the TV host about his new contract with Seven.
“It was the shortest negotiation I have had in my career,” Denton told Mediaweek.
“I contacted Kerry [Stokes] and asked if I could confidentially have a talk with him and Tim [Worner]. Peter Thompson, the other principal of Legacy Media, who also worked with me at CJZ, and I went and had a meeting, which went for about two hours.
“We put a proposal and we had a draft contact signed that evening. It was an incredible show of faith from Tim and Kerry.”
• APN Outdoor also ready to pounce on acquisition opportunities as James Warburton confirmed recently
Further merger and acquisitions activity in the outdoor media sector is starting to happen with confirmation of further aggressive moves from oOh!media.
The company tried to merge with APN Outdoor last year, but the merger was called off when it was thought it would not pass competition concerns. oOh!media more recently has turned its sights on Adshel, it was confirmed this week.
HT&E Limited told the ASX yesterday that no offer has been received for the whole of HT&E, but that the HT&E board had received a non-binding indicative offer from oOh!media Limited to acquire the company’s out-of-home division, Adshel.
The statement to the ASX followed a report in The Australian’s Dataroom column yesterday noting oOh!media’s interest and that HT&E had previously been attracting takeover interest from Seven West Media.
The HT&E board said it had assessed the oOh!media offer and determined it does not adequately reflect the value of Adshel to HT&E shareholders.
HT&E claimed Adshel Q1 revenue performance is in line with the update provided in the February result and forward bookings suggest a similar outcome in Q2. Ongoing initiatives including the reinstatement of Adshel Live nationally, the launch of Metro Trains Melbourne over the next four to six weeks, and continued digitisation of the street furniture network ensure Adshel remains a key operator in the out-of-home landscape, particularly in Melbourne.
oOh!media (OML) released this statement Thursday morning in relation to the HT&E Limited approach:
OML confirms that it submitted a confidential, non-binding indicative offer to HT&E Limited in relation to Adshel. HT&E Limited declined to engage in relation to the offer.
In addition to organic growth, OML has a long history of securing new contracts and successfully sourcing and integrating strategic acquisitions and bolt-on opportunities, and remains active in continuing to evaluate all opportunities that enhance shareholder value.
Regarding its radio division, HT&E commented ARN H1 revenue growth is tracking ahead of prior year by 5-6%. As noted in the February update, ignoring the impact of licence fees (circa $2m in H1 2017), cost growth is slightly ahead of revenue. H1 EBITDA is expected to be ahead of pro-forma prior year by approximately 4-5%.
HT&E also explained it remained confident the company will achieve, and may exceed, current analyst 2018 EBITDA consensus estimates of between $113-114m.
New APN Outdoor chief executive James Warburton said earlier this year: “On a mergers and acquisition front, you will see us being very aggressive. We are hungry with a great balance sheet and we will be looking for bolt-on acquisitions and where we can head in the future.”
Later questioned by Mediaweek, Warburton told us: “There are sectors of the market we don’t operate in such as retail and street furniture. Outside of that there is diversification, which some of our competitors have been doing. We have looked at other businesses and previous management has always passed on them. Now we are hungrier about particular segments of the market.
“In some of the other sectors there are the same old players who have dominated the segment and it perhaps hasn’t been that attractive for others.”
Matchbox Pictures has appointed writer, producer and showrunner Louise Fox to a role that will see her working exclusively for the Matchbox Pictures/NBCU family, both nationally and internationally, across a range of scripted projects.
The MD of Matchbox Pictures, Chris Oliver-Taylor, was recently poached by FremantleMedia for the role of CEO of FremantleMedia Australia, replacing Ian Hogg.
Acting managing director for Matchbox Matt Vitins said: “Louise has been a close friend and collaborator with the company over a number of years, especially on Glitch, and we are thrilled to have her even closer on our projects. She will be an incredible asset to our scripted team.”
Fox began her television career as a core member of the writing team on comedy Fast Forward before moving on to adult drama, such as Always Greener, Fireflies and Rush. She was a core member of the writing team for multi-award winning series Love My Way. She spent two years working as a member of the team writing for Lucas Film on the Star Wars live action television series, was an executive consultant/writer on Camelot and wrote episode six for the acclaimed ITV drama Broadchurch.
Most recently, Fox was a writer on Foxtel’s drama series The Kettering Incident, adapted the novel Dead Europe by Christos Tsiolkas for See-Saw Films and co-created, wrote and was showrunner/producer on both season 1 and season 2 of Glitch for ABC/Netflix.
Fox is already in development on Season 3 of Glitch and is working with NBCU on developing a pilot for Hulu in the US.
Fox commented: “Both Matchbox and NBCU are companies that have championed me and supported a range of fabulous and diverse practitioners for a long time. The quality of their work and their working relationships is a testament to that and I’m so thrilled I get to keep working with them more closely as we build on that.”
The Matchbox Pictures executive team includes Helen Panckhurst (Head of Production), Debbie Lee (Head of Scripted), Kylie Washington (Head of Unscripted) and Kate O’Connell (Director of Finance).
Founders Tony Ayres, Penny Chapman, Helen Panckhurst and Michael McMahon are still actively involved in the business. Matchbox Pictures has offices in Melbourne, Sydney and Auckland.
Photo: Louise Fox with Tony Ayres on the set of Glitch
OMD has announced it is restructuring its Melbourne leadership team. The new-look team will be led by recently appointed OMD Melbourne MD Dianne Richardson.
The new structure sees OMD Melbourne GM Antonia Glezakos and head of Coles and Target Alex Smith promoted to Managing Partners alongside current Managing Partner Sharon Cookson.
Strategist Henry Feagin has been promoted to head of strategy OMD Melbourne, and also joins the leadership team. Also joining the leadership team are Anjana Khallouf, head of the agency’s content and integration team OMD Create Melbourne, and Andrew Brannaghan, head of investment.
Recruitment is currently under way for the head of digital.
OMD Melbourne MD Dianne Richardson said, “Before joining I was aware of the agency’s high regard, but I’ve been blown away by the talent here. The restructure builds on the great strength we already have, while also setting us up for future growth and success. I’m really excited to see the leadership team and the agency continue to raise the bar for our clients.”
OMD Australia CEO Aimee Buchanan said: “We are investing in great talent at a local level to reflect the scale of our Melbourne office. This is about ensuring we deliver to our clients now and into the future.”
All appointments are effective immediately.
• Swimming over – but Seven keeps crowds watching Comm Games Night 7
• Kylie night on TEN with appearances on The Project & Graham Norton Show
By James Manning
Audience numbers backed off a little but the Commonwealth Games coverage remains the big attraction on television. The Wednesday numbers were strong enough to deliver Seven its eighth consecutive day of 40%+ combined channel shares.
Who would have thought live javelin throwing would pull 1m+ viewers?
Seven is working the commercial breaks hard with some great promos for forthcoming shows “after the Games” including more MKR, the launch of Andrew Denton’s interview and Seven Studios’ The Mentor and Back With The Ex.
Commonwealth Games on Seven
April 4: Opening Ceremony 2.0m, Primetime primary share 43.8%
April 5: Night 1 1.23m/1.16m, Afternoon 554k, Day 418k, Primetime primary share 33.0%
April 6: Night 2 1.01/1.09m, Late night 566k, Afternoon 468k, Primetime primary share 30.7%
April 7: Night 3 979/973k, Late night 499k, Afternoon 583k, Day 471k, Primetime primary share 32.3%
April 8: Night 4 1.24/1.24m, Afternoon 710k, Day 482k, Late night 466k, Primetime primary share 31.4%
April 9: Night 5 1.33/1.45m, Late 539k, Afternoon 458k, Day 321k, Primetime primary share 29.2%
April 10: Night 6 1.24m/1.48m, Late 624k, Afternoon 515k, Day 341k, Primetime primary share 34.2%
April 11: Night 7 1.15/1.19m, Late 474k, Afternoon 428k, Primetime primary share 31.5%
Mark Zuckerberg in Washington and drivers using mobile phones were part of the story mix on A Current Affair. The episode did 730,000 after two nights closer to 750,000.
An hour of RBT did 457,000.
The midweek James Bond movie was 2015’s Spectre with 389,000 watching.
It was Kylie night on the network with Kylie Minogue being interviewed from Berlin after 7pm with 459,000 watching.
Kylie was then a guest on The Graham Norton Show later in the night with 414,000 tuned in, which was the show’s best audience since December 2017.
TEN’s biggest audience of the night again was for Bachelor In Paradise with 736,000 – the channel noted the reality show had a bigger 25-54 audience than the Comm Games in Sydney, Melbourne and Perth. It was the second-biggest audience for the series so far. TEN is doing very nicely out of Bachelor Jarrod!
Hard Quiz on 570,000 and then Mad As Hell on 544,000 were the channel’s best and both in the top 10.
|ABC ME||0.7%||7mate||2.6%||GEM||2.2%||ELEVEN||2.0%||Food Net||0.7%|
|ABC||Seven Affiliates||Nine Affiliates||Ten Affiliates||SBS|
|ABC ME||1.2%||7mate||2.7%||GEM||3.4%||ELEVEN||2.5%||Food Net||0.8%|
|WEDNESDAY METRO ALL TV|
16-39 Top 5
18-49 Top 5
25-54 Top 5
Advertising magnate John Singleton is hoping to reap more than $60 million from the sale of 17 billboards around Sydney Airport, cashing in on the rising number of tourists and the residential boom in the area, reports Fairfax Media’s Carolyn Cummins.
Singleton’s company, Manboom, co-owned by property developer Robert Whyte and previously by Kerry Packer, will also sell a 9,000 square metre parcel of land as part of the deal.
The billboards are leased to the listed oOh!Media and can generate lucrative rent for the owners upwards of $550,000 a year.
Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has been warned he has an obligation to the world to prevent the “American Dream” of Facebook from turning into a privacy nightmare, reports The Australian’s Washington correspondent Cameron Stewart.
During more than three hours of often testy questioning from senators on Capitol Hill, the Facebook founder conceded that his social network was flawed and that fundamental change was required to win back public trust.
Zuckerberg conceded that self-regulation by Facebook was no longer enough and that he supported targeted laws to better protect privacy and personal data in the social media age. “My position is not that there should be no regulation. The real question is what is the right regulation,” he said when asked why his company should be trusted to self-regulate.
Zuckerberg, who in past years was opposed to greater government oversight of Facebook, said it was “certainly worth discussing” whether US tech giants should be subjected to stricter privacy laws such as those about to be introduced in Europe.
Mark Zuckerberg, the billionaire founder and chief executive of Facebook, faced a much tougher crowd on the House side of Capitol Hill in his second day of congressional testimony, reports The New York Times.
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle grilled Zuckerberg over his company’s handling of user data and were particularly focused on the platform’s privacy settings, which put the onus on users to protect their privacy.
Lawmakers repeatedly interrupted Zuckerberg and chided him for not answering questions to their satisfaction.
The New York Times also published:
Fact Check – What Mark Zuckerberg Said About Facebook, Privacy and Russia
The dawn raids on European broadcasters, including Rupert Murdoch’s Fox Networks Group, suggest that the European Commission has strong evidence of alleged wrongdoing in a football media rights auction, a legal expert says, reports Fairfax Media’s Nick Miller.
The stakes are high for Fox: the maximum fine for breaching European competition law is a tenth of the group’s entire global turnover. FNG’s parent 21st Century Fox collected $US28.5 billion ($36.7 billion) in revenue in 2017, of which $US3.1 billion came from Europe, according to its annual report.
FNG is a subsidiary of 21st Century Fox, managing Fox’s entertainment, sports and non-fiction TV channels in Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa.
It owns a controlling stake in Eredivisie Media and Marketing, which owns the Dutch Premier League (known as the Eredivisie) media and sponsorship rights.
Leslie Moonves is open to merging CBS and Viacom – on his terms – but Shari Redstone, eager for power, may be ready to sacrifice Hollywood’s most celebrated exec to chart her own path, reports Kim Masters in The Hollywood Reporter.
Moonves, 68, is on the precipice, locked in battle with Shari Redstone, the 63-year-old vice chairwoman of CBS and Viacom. Shari, daughter of ailing 94-year-old empire builder Sumner Redstone, insists that Viacom and CBS must merge, an idea that once would have held great appeal for Moonves – assuming he would be in charge. But in a transforming media environment that has buffeted Viacom assets like MTV and Nickelodeon, the plan is repellent to Moonves. And not only is Redstone pressing for a merger, she also is widely seen as intent on taking a hand in the running of the combined companies. For Moonves, long accustomed to being absolute monarch at CBS, that looks like a deal-breaker.
Media, events and experiential advertising agency Revolution360 Sydney has promoted Angela Ward to the new head of events APAC.
Ward will be responsible for running the events and experiential teams for Revolution360 across the Asia-Pacific region with offices in Sydney, Melbourne, Singapore and Jakarta.
CEO Mark Fishwick said: “We have been extremely privileged to have such a huge depth of experienced and unique talent within Revolution360. The choice of Angela as head of events across APAC will allow us to amplify our companies’ core values to further drive our ‘love what you do and do what you love’ mentality.”
Ward, who joined Revolution360 in 2014 as senior account manager, commented: “Watching the company grow into what it is today over the past four years has been truly inspiring, and I am so thrilled to have be given the responsibility of working with the team to take Revolution360’s events and experiential business to the next level.”
Australia’s news media sector has held its audience growth from 2017, with NewsMediaWorks’ latest emma data revealing 16.5 million people read news media in February 2018.
Australia’s news media audience grew 2% in 2017 for the second consecutive year, and that audience has now held through January and into February 2018.
Print newspaper audiences remained stable in February – 12.5 million or 68% of the population. Meanwhile, 74% of the population (13.6 million) consumed news media on digital devices like smartphones, tablets or laptops.
National news media was consumed by 2.5 million people in February, while metro news media saw 10.3 million readers over the period.
Regional and community news brands are read by 35% of the population or 6.4 million.
NewsMediaWorks CEO Peter Millar says consumer trust of the news media also carries over to the advertising within it, especially amid the current Facebook data controversies.
“The overwhelming degradation of trust being confronted by Facebook over the Cambridge Analytica scandal, which now has the attention of the Australian Privacy Commissioner, is certain to fuel consumer and advertiser mistrust of social media platforms,” he said.
“The lack of trust in social media was highlighted in an Australian study which found that social media was the only channel where more consumers mistrusted content that those few that trusted it. Social media also ranked last for consumer trust in ads. This is where news media stands tall as the most trusted media for consumers for both content and ads of any media channel.
“Coupled with news media’s audience gains, trust will play an even more significant role now in how Australians choose to consume news and information. Advertisers, seeking brand-safe environments, are following suit.”
The emma data showed that the consumer trust in news media has made readers brand advocates for a variety of products and services, including travel and auto. For example, 3.8 million readers (23%) encouraged other people to buy travel products and services based on their own experience. For the automotive sector, 3.2 million (19%) encouraged others to buy, while in financial products and services the figure is 1.8 million (11%).
The Sydney Morning Herald was Australia’s highest-reaching title across all platforms in February 2018, with 5.1 million readers. The Daily Telegraph followed, reaching 3.84 million readers, and the Herald Sun on 3.78 million (see table below).
Whistleblowers are set to get more protection to go public on issues of corruption and wrongdoing, as the South Australia State Government moves on long-awaited journalist shield laws, reports Daniel Wills, state political editor for The Advertiser.
SA and Queensland are the only states without shield laws to let journalists keep sources confidential and avoid possible jail time for refusing to expose the identity of informants.
Draft legislation being prepared by the new Liberal State Government, and obtained by The Advertiser, shows the new protections would apply in instances where keeping sources confidential was clearly in the public interest.
The ABC slashed the amount it spent on drama by 20% in the 2016/17 financial year, reports Fairfax Media’s Broede Carmody.
The broadcaster spent $27.2 million last financial year, down from $36.2 million the year before, according to documents tabled with the Senate’s committee for environment and communications.
Even with narrative comedy taken into account, the ABC still spent $9 million less on scripted drama between July 2016 and 2017 than it did the previous corresponding period.
The total hours of Australian drama going to air has steadily fallen over the past three years. In the 2016/17 financial year, the ABC broadcast 60 hours of fiction – down from 67 hours the previous year and 75 hours the year before that.
The ABC’s director of entertainment, David Anderson, told Fairfax Media the broadcaster was “unrivalled” in its commitment to Australian content.
Anderson said the ABC will spend an extra $30 million on Australian content across “most genres” in the 2017/18 financial year.
My Kitchen Rules judges Manu Feildel and Pete Evans have broken their silence about the reality show “scandal”, reports news.com.au.
In a promo released by Seven, the two chefs confirm that one team will be booted from the cooking competition in an episode next week for “unprecedented attacks” against their fellow competitors.
“We would like to take a moment to talk about the events that led to one team being removed from My Kitchen Rules,” Manu says in the promo clip.
“After continued warnings and an unprecedented attack on all the teams, we had to act.”
It’s not known exactly which team is booted from the competition, but the odds are that it’s Sonya and Hadil who’ll be sent packing for their offensive behaviour.