It’s Close to Game On…. Who will you be working for in the future?
It’s the two changes that a number of media players have been waiting for, the changes that will see a new wave of media mergers or acquisitions. The first hurdle was cleared Monday night.
PM Malcolm Turnbull, Communications Minister Mitch Fifield and the government ministers approved plans last night to scrap the “media reach rule” that prevents any Television operator from reaching more than 75 per cent of the population – Tick. They also canned the “two out of three” rule that restricts any company from owning more than three traditional media platforms in a single market, be it print, radio or TV. Big Tick.
The formalities are next, a Coalition party room cabinet decision is likely today and then the next piece of the puzzle is a vote in parliament.
The reforms are still being drafted and should slip in when parliament resumes and sits from March 15. While the Big end of town media players (Nine Entertainment, News Corp and the like) may want it pushed ahead fast, the general feeling is it may not necessarily have the same urgency applied by the government. They possibly have bigger things to talk about to keep voters happy ahead of a potential Federal election.
One thing is for sure, in 2016 the future of radio companies like Southern Cross Media, the Australian Radio Network and Nova Entertainment and even Macquarie Media may quite possibly be in the hands of larger media owners both here and from overseas.
The media law changes will change radio ownership in Australia significantly. Ask yourself – Who will you be working for in the future?