Macquarie Radio Network

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
For the former Macquarie Regional RadioWorks; see Southern Cross Austereo.
Macquarie Radio Network Limited
Joint venture
Industry Broadcast radio
Founded 31 March 2015 (31 March 2015)
Headquarters Pyrmont, New South Wales,
Key people
Adam Lang, Chief Operating Officer
Parent Fairfax Media (54.5%)
John Singleton Promotions Pty. Ltd. (45.5%)
Website Macquarie Radio Network Limited

Macquarie Radio Network Limited (ASXMRN) is an Australian media company, operating radio stations nationally in the capital cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth, as well as regional Queensland, it is based in the Sydney suburb of Pyrmont. It is a publicly listed company, majority owned by Fairfax Media. It also operates news service Macquarie National News.



In some respects the history of Macquarie began when 2GB first went on the air in 1926. However, the network itself was formed in 1938.[1] From inception and until the early 1960s, the network was renowned for its high quality productions of variety programs, quizzes, dramas and serials. Most of these programs eminated from Sydney. As well as being heard on all of the network's stations, right across the country, they were also syndicated to non-network stations. With the coming of television in 1956, the radio audience for these types of programs dropped dramatically. Macquarie stations solved the problem by quickly increasing their news, talk, commentary and current affairs content.

In 1973, a significant year because it was the 50th anniversary of broadcasting in Australia, the Macquarie Network had the following constituent stations: 2GB Sydney; 2CA Canberra; 2PK Parkes; 2WL Wollongong; 3AW Melbourne; 4BH Brisbane; 4BU Bundaberg; 4GY Gympie; 5DN Adelaide; 6IX Perth; 6BY Bunbury; 6MD Merredin; 6WB Katanning; 7HO Hobart.[2]

By the late 1980s it had become Australia's only national commercial radio network. However, during the 1930s, 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, there were a number of other such networks, the major one being the Major Network[3][4] During the last three decades, a number of new networks have arisen, including the Macquarie Regional RadioWorks, unrelated to the Macquarie Radio Network. In 2007, 13 networks owned or controlled 80 per cent of the 261 Australian commercial radio stations[5]

In 2010, Macquarie joined forces with Pacific Star Network to launch Melbourne's revamped 3MP as MTR 1377. On 2 March 2012, MTR ceased operations when Pacific Star was unable to pay any monies owed to Macquarie.[6]

On 31 August 2011, Macquarie acquired the Smart Radio Network which encompasses 4VL, Triple CCC FM, 4HI, 4ZR, 4LM, 4SB and Hot Country network at a cost of $6 million. These stations are part of Macquarie Regional Radio, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Macquarie Radio Network.

Merger with Fairfax Radio Network[edit]

In December 2014, Macquarie announced that it had agreed to a merger with Fairfax Media. Under the deal, Fairfax will gain a 55% share in the Macquarie Radio Network, with Macquarie's existing shareholders holding the remaining 45%.[7] To comply with legislation only allowing two radio licences to be held by one party in each market, stations 2CH and 4LM will be sold.[8] The merger was completed in March 2015.[9][10][11][12]

In April 2015, a number of programming changes occurred at Macquarie's stations. At 4BC Brisbane, Breakfast presenters Ian Skippen and Loretta Ryan, Mornings host Patrick Condren, Nights host Walter Williams and Weekend Breakfast presenter Murray Shoring were axed, as well as sister Magic 882 Nights presenter Jo Henderson. In total, 18 positions were cut, and programming replaced by networked shows from 2GB and 2UE.[13][14][15] In Sydney, 2UE's afternoon announcer Angela Catterns was axed, as was the entire newsroom, and the station's news services were replaced by the Macquarie's national news service[16] - while in Melbourne all of Magic 1278's lineup and most of the production team was cut.[17]




To be divested[edit]

Due to ACMA regulation the following stations have to be divested, either due to regulations limiting the number of radio stations owned by one company in each market, or cross-media ownership.

Recent Divestment[edit]


  1. ^ "The Magic Spark", R.R. Walker, 1973, The Hawthorn Press.
  2. ^ "The Magic Spark", R.R. Walker, 1973, The Hawthorn Press.
  3. ^ The Major Network was formed in 1938 by Mr Dave Worrall, manager of 3DB, Melbourne. It lasted until the late 1970s, and included stations in most capital cities, ie 2UE, 3DB, 4BK, 5AD, 6PR, 7HT.
  4. ^ Other former radio networks include: Federal Network; Associated Broadcasters of Australia; AWA Broadcasting. There were also a number of State-based networks.
  5. ^ Changing Stations: The Story of Australian Commercial Radio, Bridget Griffen-Foley, UNSW Press, 2009; referenced as Commercial Radio: A Snapshot, CRA, Sydney, 2007
  6. ^ Butler, Ben; Battersby, Lucy (2 March 2012). "'No worries' as MTR goes off the air". The Age (First ed.) (Fairfax Media). p. 6. Retrieved 5 March 2012. 
  7. ^ Janda, Michael (22 December 2014). "Fairfax and Macquarie to merge radio network". ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation). Retrieved 9 April 2015. 
  8. ^ "Macquarie Radio Network to sell two radio stations". 2 April 2015. Retrieved 9 April 2015. 
  9. ^ "And the deal is done...finally!". Radio Today. 31 March 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  10. ^ "MRN Fairfax merger complete". 1 April 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015. 
  11. ^ Sinclair, Lara (9 April 2015). "2UE News to go off air as newsroom merges with 2GB". The Australian (News Limited). AAP. Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  12. ^ "COMPLETION OF FAIRFAX RADIO NETWORK MERGER WITH MACQUARIE RADIO NETWORK" (Press release). Fairfax Media. 31 March 2015. Retrieved 11 April 2015. Fairfax Media Limited ... today announced the completion of the merger of its Fairfax Radio Network ... with Macquarie Radio Network ... 
  13. ^ "Media Statement from 4BC". 4BC. Fairfax Media. 10 April 2015. Retrieved 10 April 2015. 
  14. ^ "Axe falls at 4BC and Magic 882". Radio Today. 10 April 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  15. ^ Cooper, Nathanael (14 April 2015). "Plug pulled on 4BC Brisbane boss". The Courier-Mail (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 21 April 2015. 
  16. ^ Christensen, Nic (11 April 2015). "Macquarie/Fairfax Radio merger described as ‘hostile takeover’ as 2UE axes Angela Catterns". mUmBRELLA. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  17. ^ "Magic gone from Magic! Entire on air line-up sacked". 13 April 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 

External links[edit]