Southern Cross Austereo (SCA) has created a new top sales role to drive revenue growth, as it looks to turn around its performance. It comes as the networks readies itself for the return of Hamish and Andy to its embattled Today's Hit Network.
Brian Gallagher will join SCA as its chief sales officer: a leadership position across the entire sales operation of SCA's media channels and brands, with a responsibility to drive revenue growth.
Gallagher has more than 30 years' experience in media including a background in free-to-air TV, pay TV, content marketing and production, technical broadcast and programmatic trading. He has previously worked as the CEO for Ignite Media Brands, Full Circle Media and was the strategy and development manager for Network Ten.
SCA's recently appointed CEO Grant Blackley said Gallagher's appointment is part of a “refreshed and intensive focus on sales”; one of his key priorities going forward.
“[Gallagher] will bring to SCA a new focus on the way we operate as one sales team nationwide and we look forward to his insights into driving revenue growth across all our traditional media, integrated solutions and digital sales platforms,” Blackley said.
Gallagher will take up his new position on 15 July, a week after Hamish and Andy return to the airwaves nationally on Today's Hit Network on Monday 6 July.
SCA is hanging a lot on Hamish and Andy's return.
The comedy duo have been announcing their return for the past month in a series of TV and out of home advertising, noting that while their official return is July 13, they are “secretly” returning a week earlier.
What hasn't been a secret is that talk of the duo return has caused ripples throughout the industry, with questions over whether the move will be enough to turn around fortunes for SCA.
Speaking to AdNews last month, SCA executive director metropolitan operations Guy Dobson called the duo “phase two” of the network's strategy to reinvigorate its Sydney Hit 104.1 station.
He also hit out at claims by newly promoted APN News and Media CEO Ciaran Davis – who was previously CEO of the company’s Australian Radio Network – that Hamish and Andy won't be the “silver bullet” that they're expected to be.
“Keep on saying those kinds of phrases and idioms, it just makes Hamish and Andy hungrier to be that silver bullet – them's fighting words,” Dobson said.
“All I can say is don't compare the current crop of drive shows. Throw 15 drive shows at Hamish and Andy – you're dealing with a once in a life time phenomenon here.”
“We will dominate drive.”
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