Hit and Triple M for Amazon Alexa
Flash briefings from Southern Cross Austereo’s (SCA) Hit Network and Triple M are now available on Amazon Alexa. Forward-thinking SCA, which already has stations synced up to Google Home, officially launched on the service in Australia on 1 February. Listeners can add Triple M news and sports updates, as well as news, entertainment and celebrity news from the Hit Network to their personalised flash briefings, which play by asking “Alexa, what’s the news?”. SCA’s chief creative office Guy Dobson says as connected home products become more popular with Australians, SCA “will continue to lead in this space, making sure our content is easy to find from anywhere that our listeners want to find it”. At launch, briefings will be available for the major metro markets, but this may be extended to other markets in the future.
Fairfax and NZME fight merger ruling
Fairfax and its New Zeealand business Stuff, previously Fairfax New Zealand, and NZME will appeal the High Court decision not to authorise the proposed merger of the two businesses. The two businesses firs announced they aimed to join forces in 2016. At the time, it was reported NZME would pay NZ$55m to acquire Fairfax New Zealand’s assets, with Fairfax Australia also gaining a 41% share in the company. The New Zealand Commerce Commission (NZCC) signalled it would not allow the merger and then blocked the merger last year. The New Zealand Commerce Commission (NZCC) signalled it would not allow the merger.
More movement at Bauer
Jayne Ferguson, Bauer Media’s general manager of women’s lifestyle and entertainment, is set to leave the company. CEO Paul Dykzeul, who expanded his remit to the Australian business last year, formerly the CEO of Bauer NZ, will absorb the entertainment and lifestyle portfolio to his remit. Ferguson was publisher of some of Bauer’s biggest brands including TV Week, Take 5, NW and OK!, before being promoted to the general manager role in 2016. She took on the responsibility of Women’s Day and The Australian Women’s Weekly. There has been a lot of movement within Bauer, including several exec team shake-ups and magazine closures. Read more here.
Cummins&Partners appoints Sarah McGregor as creative lead
The former head of copy at Leo Burnett, Sarah McGregor, has joined Cummins & Partners Melbourne as a creative director. Her appointment follows a reshuffle in Cummins' creative department after the departure of lead creatives Jim Ingram and Ben Couzens last year. McGregor joins after 7 years at Leo Burnett and has worked at agencies in both London and Melbourne including Y&R, Grey London and Karmarama. She has created work for some of the world’s most famous brands including Honda, Peters, Bonds, Nintendo, Virgin, Emirates, Cadbury, Schweppes, General Mills, Yellow Pages, Nestle and most recently, globally recognised work for Marriage Equality.
KPMG to launch Social Media Advisory group led by Louise Pogmore
Louise Pogmore, former managing partner at One Green Bean, will lead the newly launched Social Media Advisory group at KPMG. KPMG’s Social Media Advisory group will be co-led by Pogmore and Greg Daniel, the former CEO of The Campaign Palace. Daniel has been with KPMG since the firm acquired his social media intelligence agency SR7 in 2014. KPMG Australia’s new Social Media Advisory group will enable businesses to take advantage of social media while mitigating the risks, allowing companies to analyse and influence customer conversations.
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