DMG Radio rebrands as Nova Entertainment, denies move related to Daily Mail’s arrival

NOVA Entertainment logoLachlan Murdoch’s DMG Radio Australia is to rebrand as Nova Entertainment, although the company has denied it is shedding its last links to ownership by the Daily Mail Group and Trust because the Mail Online has entered the Australian market.

The company is rebranding some 17 months after Murdoch bought the remaining 50 per cent from the Daily Mail and General Trust through his investment vehicle Illyria, but CEO Cathy O’Connor said it was to do with reflecting its diverse investments.

When asked if it had to do with the Mail Online’s entry to the Australian market O’Connor said: “No, its not. Lachlan purchased the remaining stake in 2012 so DMGT has not been involved since 2012 so it was natural that at some point we would change the name.”

She also spoke about the new radio survey which comes out in under two weeks, and will see new data company Gfk provide the figures for the first time. However, she said she expected the slew of changes in the FM radio market, especially in Sydney and Melbourne, to have a greater impact on the new ratings.

“It’s hard to predict we have a significant and probably unprecedented change in FM with a number one breakfast show moving to another signal and a relaunch,” she said.

“We had Nova in Sydney in a growing trajectory  at the end of last year so we feel confident we are well placed in the event of change. But I won’t try to predict who will come out one, two or three.”

But O’Connor said she did not believe the new ratings system would impact the radio ratings.

“The important things is it’s not a change of currency,” she said. “I think it will have a minimal impact in survey one. I think if you she big swings in survey one it will be about programming changes than it will be about the research methodology. ”

O’Connor said the new name was taken from FM radio station Nova, but said it would show the company has other non radio assets, adding:  “The name came very naturally from our established brand in FM which is Nova, which we think has good brand salience in Australia.

“Anyone who started in broadcast media understands that the identity of the company is more about delivering content and delivering that content via as many channels as possible.”

Nova Entertainment’s non radio assets include live events including Nova’s Red Room, the Smooth music channel on Foxtel and a a partnership with Coles Supermarkets to deliver Coles Radio across the digital spectrum.

O’Connor also spoke about the upcoming first radio survey of 2014 which she said would likely be impacted by major programming changes.

Nic Christensen


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