Hong Kong-owned publisher Broadbent Media quietly launches 12 news websites in Australia

Broadbent MediaA publishing company owned by a Hong Kong-based collective of advertising and media executives has launched a group of news websites in Australia.

Named Broadbent Media, the company has soft-launched 12 specialist interest news websites across a range of subjects, from sport, cars, food and property to celebrity gossip, gaming and fitness.

The launch has been quiet so far, with the identity of the owners – which have other business interests outside publishing in Hong Kong – still a secret.

The company’s editorial staff are based in Sydney and Queensland, Australia, but its headquarters are located in one of the most expensive areas for real estate in Hong Kong, the International Finance Centre tower.

Marshall Hall

Marshall Hall

The man behind the editorial plans for the launch is Marshall Hall, a 25-year veteran of Australian newspaper publishers Fairfax and News Limited. He is editor-in-chief across all the titles.

Hall left his job running the Gold Coast-based PR and HR consulting firm he founded in 2005, Consulting Hall, six months ago to begin planning the launch.

Over a long career that began in the 1980s, Broadment started out as a reporter for the Townsville Bulletin, and went on to write for The Age, The Courier Mail and the Gold Coast Bulletin.

Broadbent Media currently has eight journalists, and is on a recruitment drive, Hall says.

The target group is people in the 15-45 age range with titles including pop culture site A-Muse Yourself, style title Trend Femmes and celebrity tittle-tattle mag Gollygoss.

Hall would not reveal who the owners are, other than to say that “they compromise a group of advertising and media industry figures” from a Hong Kong “entity”.

The business model for the sites is advertising based, with native advertising an option for advertisers on the sites, which do not have a subscription fee or a paywall.

“I come from a newspaper background. My first stint was in 1988 on a free community newspaper. Newspapers have thrived and grown on that model. There’s no reason why we can’t do it online,” Hall said.

Robin Hicks


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