27 Jul 2018

Fairfax Australia to merge with Nine Entertainment

From Morning Report, 7:54 am on 27 July 2018

Fairfax Media in Australia has announced plans to merge with Nine Entertainment. The merger if approved by Australia's A triple CC, the equivalent of our Commerce Commission, would create an integrated media giant across television, online video streaming, print, digital and real estate advertising and effectively erase the Fairfax name in Australia. Former Prime Minister Paul Keating who was the architect of the Hawke government's cross-media rules says the merger needs to be given "high scrutiny". He said Nine had the "ethics of an alley cat". And that the "pus" from the "carbuncle" that is Nine's news culture will infect Fairfax and undermine quality journalism. The news sent Fairfax shares soaring, while Nine shares plunged. It is not clear what impact the merger would have on Fairfax's media operations in New Zealand. Business editor Gyles Beckford joins us with the analysis.