AFL legend Kevin Bartlett leaves SEN

Ex-AFL star Kevin Bartlett has resigned from Victoria’s SEN radio station after a mutual agreement was made in May 2019 that Bartlett and John Rothfield’s drive show would not return in 2020.

It’s understood that Bartlett will leave the station near the end of the month. Prior to the announcement, the show was planned to run until the AFL Grand Final eve in September, but Bartlett’s resignation will cut that short.

Bartlett is a former Richmond star

SEN owner and operator Pacific Star Network announced plans in 2018 to merge with sports media company Crocmedia, which would see Crocmedia founder Craig Hutchinson take the CEO role.

The Age reports that Bartlett’s co-host, Rothfield, is a major shareholder of SEN with a 13.3% stake, which may complicate his departure should it arise.

Bartlett has been with SEN since the station launched 15 years ago. Hutchinson said he was one of the most influential figures in the station’s history.

“KB has been an extraordinary part of the station’s history and was one of many who pushed through the early years to help drive SEN to the audience it has today,” Hutchison said.

“We respect his decision to call time early and thank him on behalf of all listeners for his energy and commitment to the station over the journey.

“We wish he and Denise every success in the future and thank them for their long and significant contribution.”

In December 2017, Bartlett was moved from the mornings slot to the 3-6pm slot, which he was reported to be unhappy about. It was reported by the Herald Sun that Bartlett said he enjoyed the ‘old SEN’, not the ‘new SEN’.

Colleagues and ex-SEN talent have weighed in on the decision on Twitter, naming the Crocmedia takeover of the station as the cause of tension within the ranks. Commentators are predicting the station will look to recruit one or two big names to replace Bartlett.

A new drive show will be announced in due course.


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