Sky News Australia

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Sky News Australia
Sky News Live logo.jpg
Sky News Australia Logo
Launched 19 February 1996[1]
Owned by Australian News Channel Pty Ltd
(Sky plc 33%
Seven West Media 33%
Nine Entertainment Co. 33%)
Picture format 576i (SDTV 16:9)
Audience share 0.4% (January 2015, OzTam[2])
Country Australia
Language English
Sister channel(s) Sky News Business Channel
Sky News Weather Channel
Foxtel Channel 601
Sky Television
(New Zealand)
Channel 85
Foxtel Channel 601
Optus Channel 601
Neighbourhood Cable Channel 21
(New Zealand)
Channel 85
Xbox 360 Channel 601

Sky News Australia (branded on air as Sky News Live, and until 18 January 2015 as Sky News National) is an Australian 24-hour cable and satellite news channel available in 2.5 million homes on Foxtel, Austar, Optus Television and Neighbourhood Cable subscription platforms. It is also available in New Zealand on Sky Television and Vodafone [1]

Sky News Australia launched on 19 February 1996, as the first Australian-produced television news channel. Sky News was added to Austar on 1 April 2000.[3] In 2004, Sky News began broadcasting Sky News Active, its on-demand interactive TV news service.[1] In 2008, Sky News launched the Sky News Business Channel, and on 20 January 2009, Sky News launched Australian Public Affairs Channel (A-PAC). It began widescreen broadcasting on 17 May 2009.[4]


Australian News Channel Pty Ltd logo

Sky News Channel's parent company, Australian News Channel Pty Ltd (ANC), is owned equally by British Sky Broadcasting, Seven Media Group and Nine Entertainment Co., each with a 33% stake in the company. The carriage deal between Australian News Channel and Foxtel is due to expire in February 2017.[5]

In 2013, Sky News Australia was granted AU$20 million in funding from its parent company to be used over three years.[6]

On 26 February 2015 it was reported that News Corp Australia launched an AU$25 million bid for full ownership of Australian News Channel.[7] In June 2015, it was reported that ANC's stakeholders had rejected a News Corp takeover offer of AU$20 million, with the owners wanting a minimum of AU$50 million.[8]


Sky News programming consists of a mix of live news bulletins, live broadcasts from events (such as Parliament Question Time and selected press conferences, original commentary panel programs and simulcasts of international sister station Sky News UK.

Sky News Australia increased its primetime programming offerings, particularly its political themed shows, significantly in 2013, ahead of the 2013 federal election, moving away from rolling news or formal news bulletins in primetime.[6] Sky News Australia rebranded on 19 January 2015 as "Sky News Live", dropping the "Sky News National" branding.[9]

On weekdays, throughout most of the day, rolling news coverage is presented from one of Sky News Australia's studios. From 4pm (AEST/AEDT), commentary programs begin, and continue through primetime until 11pm AEST/AEDT. Most of these programs are presesented by commentators discussing the news of the day, often with a panel of other commentators, and feature a news update at the beginning of the program (and sometimes further updates during the program). Rolling news continues from 11pm AEST/AEDT before coverage switches to an overnight simulcast of Sky News UK after midnight.

Current programs[edit]

Former programs[edit]

  • Hadley! (cancelled after a 4 episode run in 2010)
  • Showdown (premiered 13 September 2011; replaced by Richo + Jones on Tuesday nights in 2014)[14]
  • The Contrarians (replaced by Keneally and Cameron on 12 September 2014)
  • Friday Live (formerly Friday Night Live, premiered 5 July 2013. Cancelled; final episode on 12 December 2014)[15][16]
  • Keneally and Cameron (cancelled; ran from 19 September 2014 to 27 March 2015)[17]
  • PVO NewsHour (ended 28 May 2015)[10]
  • Lunchtime Agenda (ended 29 May 2015)[10][18]
  • Saturday Live (premiered as short run series for 2013 election coverage on 10 August 2013; ended 31 August 2013)[19]

Notable presenters[edit]

Sky News Australia outside broadcast equipment.
Kieran Gilbert, reporting from the Australian War Memorial in Canberra.


Program presenters[edit]

Former presenters[edit]


Sky News Australia has a bureau in every capital city in Australia, completing this with the opening of its Hobart studio in 2013.[6] The base of Sky News Australia is in the Sydney suburb of Macquarie Park, where the majority of its news and programming is broadcast from. Its Melbourne studio was upgraded in 2014, allowing it to be used as a secondary broadcast studio.[20] Hinch Live became the first regular program to be broadcast from Melbourne.[21] Ahron Young is the Melbourne Bureau Chief.[22] The third major bureau is in Parliament House, Canberra which Lyndal Curtis became Bureau Chief of in October 2015.[23] Additionally, Sky News has a small office in the Channel Seven building in Martin Place, which includes a small street-level single camera studio which looks onto Elizabeth Street, Sydney.[24]

Internationally, Sky News has a bureau in Auckland, New Zealand which broadcasts Sky News NZ.[citation needed]


Apart from its own resources, Sky News Australia uses the news resources of its parent companies Seven News, Nine News and Sky News UK, as well as sister network Fox News Channel. It signed a four-year partnership deal with CNN International commencing 1 January 2011, and additionally has agreememnts with CCTV China, ABC America, CBS, Reuters, APTN, Bloomberg, Dow Jones and TV3 New Zealand.[25]



The highest rating broadcast on Sky News Australia was an episode of Paul Murray Live on 26 June 2013 (following the 2013 Labor leadership spill), averaging 197,000 viewers across a special two hour broadcast. The highest audience share Sky News Australia has achieved was during coverage of the 2009 Victorian bushfires.[26]

On December 15, 2014 during the Sydney Lindt cafe siege, coverage of the unfolding incident took 16 of the 20 most watched programs on the Foxtel platform. The 7pm (AEST) hour was the highest rated at 109,000 viewers.[27] Sky News achieved a day time share of 2.6% (behind ABC News 24's 3.8%) and a primetime share of 1.5% (behind ABC News 24's 2.5%).[28]

Sky News Live rated 56,000 viewers for early evening coverage of the 2015 Queensland state election, and 83,000 viewers for later coverage, beaten by ABC News 24's coverage which was watched by 195,000 viewers nationally.[29] For its coverage of the failed Liberal leadership spill on 9 February 2015 between 9am and 10am, Sky News Live was the second most watched subscription channel and the coverage was the third most watched program of the day with 69,000 viewers.[30]

Sky News Live reached a total audience of 700,000 viewers on September 14, 2015 (including simulcast on Sky News Business) during the 2015 Liberal leadership spill. It was the most watched subcription television channel for the evening and outrated all free-to-air television channels between 11pm and midnight AEST.[31] The highest rated hour of coverage was from 10pm, achieving 190,000 viewers, the second highest ratings since the 2013 Labor Party spill.[32][33]


List of accolades
Year Award Category Recipient(s) Result
2007 2007 ASTRA Awards Most outstanding performance by a presenter David Speers Won
Most Creative Use of Technology Anytime, Anywhere Nominated
2008 Logie Awards of 2008 Most Outstanding News Coverage Federal Election Nominated
2008 ASTRA Awards Most outstanding performance by a presenter David Speers Won
Most outstanding performance by a broadcast journalist Kieran Gilbert Won
Mike Willesee Nominated
Most outstanding performance by a presenter Hellen Dalley Nominated
Channel of the year Sky News Australia Nominated
Favourite male personality James Bracey Nominated
David Speers Nominated
Favourite female personality Helen Dalley Nominated
Brooke Corte Nominated
Most Outstanding News Program or Coverage APEC 2007 Won
2009 2009 ASTRA Awards Most Outstanding Performance by a Broadcast Journalist David Speers Won
Favourite male personality Kieran Gilbert Nominated
2010 Logie Awards of 2010 Most Outstanding Public Affairs Report Liberal Leadership Meltdown Nominated
2010 ASTRA Awards Most Outstanding Performance by a Broadcast Journalist Kieran Gilbert Won
2011 Logie Awards of 2011 Most Outstanding News Coverage Election 2010 Nominated
2011 ASTRA Awards Most Outstanding Performance by a Broadcast Journalist Ashleigh Gillon Won
Most Outstanding Performance by a Presenter David Speers Won
Most Outstanding News Program or Coverage Election 2010 Won
2012 Logie Awards of 2012 Most Outstanding News Coverage Qantas Grounded Nominated
2012 ASTRA Awards Most Outstanding Performance by a Presenter David Speers Won
2013 Logie Awards of 2013 Most Outstanding News Coverage Rudd Vs Gillard Leadership Challenge Nominated
2013 ASTRA Awards Most Outstanding Performance by a Broadcast Journalist Ahron Young Won
Favourite personality - male Paul Murray Nominated
Favourite Programme Australian Paul Murray Live Nominated
2014 Logie Awards of 2014 Most Outstanding News Coverage Leadership Spill Nominated
2014 ASTRA Awards Channel of the year Sky News National Nominated
Favourite personality - male Paul Murray Nominated
Favourite personality - female Laura Jayes Nominated
Favourite program: Australian Paul Murray Live Nominated
Most Outstanding News Program Election 2013 coverage Won
Paul Murray Live Nominated
Most Outstanding performance by a broadcast journalist Kieran Gilbert Nominated
Ahron Young Nominated
Daniel Bourchier Nominated
David Speers Won
2015 Logie Awards of 2015 Most Outstanding News Coverage What Is Metadata? Nominated
2015 ASTRA Awards[34] Channel of the year Sky News National Won
Most Outstanding Presenter – Male Paul Murray Won
Most Outstanding Presenter – Female Nina Stevens Nominated
Most Outstanding Performance by a Broadcast Journalist David Speers Won
Kieran Gilbert Nominated
Celina Edmonds Nominated
Ahron Young Nominated
Most Outstanding News Program Paul Murray Live Won
PM Agenda Nominated
Richo + Jones Nominated


Former Sky News Australia logo

Sky News began broadcasting in widescreen, along with its sister channels on 17 May 2009. Sky News Australia only provides closed captioning between 4pm and 5pm (AEST/AEDT) each day.[35]

Other services[edit]

Sky News Multiview[edit]

With the roll-out of Foxtel Digital, Sky News Australia launched the Sky News Active interactive news service based on the Sky News UK service with the same name. The service offered a choice of eight news screens, some with original content not seen on the main channel they vary depending on the days news or events and include the latest news, business, sport, showbiz and weather in text. Other features included interactive polling and the latest news headlines via text. On 15 November 2009 Sky News active re-launched with a new look as well as 5 additional local screens (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, and Adelaide[36]

Sky News Now[edit]

Sky News Now was a mobile service available on Vodafone, Telstra and 3. It offered a wide variety of news in both video and text.[37] As of 2015, the service was no longer available.

Sky News Alerts[edit]

Sky News Alerts is a SMS and MMS breaking news service available on all mobile phones inside Australia.[38] Breaking news alerts are sent to a subscriber via SMS or MMS at a cost per message.[39]


In November 2014, Sky News Australia was appointed as a provider for Qantas in-flight news bulletins replacing a longstanding contract with the Nine Network.[40]


Sky News offers various programs via podcast including First Business, Market Day, Showbiz, Agenda, Australian News Week, and Prime News New Zealand.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c About Sky News
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ "News on the Hour". Illawarra Mercury (Illawarra, Australia: Fairfax Media). 17 March 2000. p. 55. Retrieved 26 January 2010. 
  4. ^ [2]
  5. ^ Davidson, Darren (26 February 2015). "$25m Sky bid not fair value: Gyngell". Business Spectator. Retrieved 26 February 2015. 
  6. ^ a b c Davidson, Darren (28 January 2013). "Sky widens coverage as investors rain cash". The Australian. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  7. ^ Christensen, Nic (26 February 2015). "Reports News Corp Australia to launch $25m bid for Sky Channels". Mumbrella. Retrieved 26 February 2015. 
  8. ^ Knox, David (22 June 2015). "Report: Shareholders reject $20m offer for SKY News". TV Tonight. Retrieved 23 June 2015. 
  9. ^ "SKY NEWS LIVE and ready in 2015". 20 January 2015. Retrieved 21 January 2015. 
  10. ^ a b c d e Knox, David (May 19, 2015). "More politics in SKY News revamp". TV Tonight. Retrieved May 19, 2015. 
  11. ^ Knox, David (3 December 2012). "Stan Grant joins SKY News". TV Tonight. Retrieved 16 June 2015. 
  12. ^ Knox, David (14 February 2011). "Airdate: Richo". TV Tonight. Retrieved 16 June 2015. 
  13. ^ "Chris Kenny, Paul Murray in Sky News revamp". The Australian. 17 December 2014. Retrieved 16 June 2015. 
  14. ^ Knox, David (September 12, 2011). "Airdate: The Showdown". TV Tonight. Retrieved May 19, 2015. 
  15. ^ Knox, David (26 June 2013). "SKY News adds Friday Night Live edition". TV Tonight. Retrieved 16 June 2015. 
  16. ^
  17. ^ Knox, David. "Sky News resting Keneally and Cameron". TV Tonight. Retrieved April 11, 2015. 
  18. ^
  19. ^ Knox, David (6 August 2013). "SKY News launches two political shows". TV Tonight. Retrieved 23 June 2015. 
  20. ^ "Sky News updates Melbourne bureau". NewsCastStudio. 26 August 2014. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  21. ^ "Derryn Hinch to host new Hinch Live talk current affairs show on Sky News". Herald Sun. 6 January 2014. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  22. ^ "Police take control at troubled Grocon site". The Age. 4 September 2012. Retrieved 13 October 2015. 
  23. ^ Knox, David (13 October 2015). "Former ABC journo joins SKY News". TV Tonight. Retrieved 13 October 2015. 
  24. ^ Sinclair, Lara (5 October 2009). "Sky to go local at News offices". The Australian. Retrieved 7 November 2015. 
  25. ^ "Sky News Australia Partners With CNN International". 11 October 2010. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  26. ^ "Nine maroons Seven with Origin and leadership double". Sydney Morning Herald. 27 June 2013. Retrieved 28 January 2015. 
  27. ^ Knox, David. "Ratings: Monday 15 December 2014". TV Tonight. Retrieved April 20, 2015. 
  28. ^ Knox, David (December 17, 2014). "Martin Place siege: ABC / SKY News". TV Tonight. Retrieved April 20, 2015. 
  29. ^ "SatTV". Mediaweek. Retrieved April 20, 2015. ...News24 metro 195k ... SkyNews late 83k early 56k. 
  30. ^ "Mon STV". Mediaweek. Retrieved April 20, 2015. Mon STV @SkyNewsAust #2 channel Leadership crisis 9-10am #3 program 69k 
  31. ^ Lallo, Michael (September 15, 2015). "ABC and Sky News the big winners out of Liberal leadership spill". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on September 16, 2015. Retrieved September 16, 2015. 
  32. ^ Knox, David (September 15, 2015). "Monday 14 September 2015". TV Tonight. Retrieved September 16, 2015. 
  33. ^ Bodey, Michael (September 15, 2015). "ABC News 24 the ratings winner as Turnbull wins spill". The Australian. Retrieved September 16, 2015. (subscription required)
  34. ^ Byrnes, Holly (13 March 2015). "ASTRA Awards 2015: Wentworth, Sky News among winners". News Corp Australia. Retrieved 13 March 2015. 
  35. ^
  36. ^ Sinclair, Lara (5 October 2009). "Stock Quotes". The Australian. 
  37. ^ "Australia's first business news channel to launch early 2008". On Screen Asia. 5 November 2007. Retrieved 13 October 2015. 
  38. ^ Sky News Alerts
  39. ^ "SMS Alerts Terms and Conditions". Sky News Live. Retrieved 13 October 2015. 
  40. ^

External links[edit]