TV sales merry-go-round sees big shifts at Nine, Ten and Seven

Australia’s TV networks have gone through a day of senior level moves among their sales teams which have seen the departures of Seven’s Melbourne sales boss and new blood for both Nine and Ten in Brisbane.

After this afternoon’s announcement of the departure of Seven’s Andrew Will to DMG in Melbourne, Nine revealed that the boss of its Brisbane operation Les Hart is to return to Sydney, to become national sales manager for digital channels Go and GEM. And Nine has appointed Ten’s Richard Hunwick as its new Brisbane Sales Director. Hunwick is moving across from Ten, where he has been in the equivalent role for the last five years. His previous roles on the agency side included helping found Mitchells Queensland ten years ago.  

Peter Wiltshire, group sales and marketing director of Nine’s parent company PBL Media, said: “Richard holds Brisbane in his hands and heart, we are delighted he has chosen to further his media career with Nine, joining the market leader as we continue to grow the business. He is held in high regard by the market and his broad media experience will complement the future direction of PBL Media.”

Hunwick said, “I am thrilled to be joining Peter and the team at this exciting time. The free-to-air TV market has never been more stimulating, with so much choice for advertisers and viewers. I am very much looking forward to the challenges ahead, and to working creatively across Nine and all the PBL platforms.”

Meanwhile, Hart – a 22 year veteran with Nine – said of his new role: “I am absolutely delighted with this opportunity to work with the sales team representing the leading new channel brands on free-to-air television. It’s a very exciting time for advertisers.”

As well as the departure of Hunwick, Ten had further changes to announce in Brisbane.

Stephen Leeds has been announced as General Manager of TVQ Brisbane, with Chris O’Connell retiring from the position.

Leeds has been Network Ten’s Melbourne-based joint national sales manager for the last two years. The new role will see him run all aspects of the Brisbane operation, reporting in to chief operating officer Kerry Kingston.

Prior to Ten, Leeds worked at agencies AIS and Zenith.

O’Connell will continue to work for Ten in a consultancy role.

Kingston said: “Stephen is an accomplished television executive and his combination of commercial focus, effective management style and broad industry knowledge will equip him well as he moves into this key station management role.”

“On behalf of all at Network Ten, I would like to sincerely thank Chris for his considerable contribution to the Network.

Leeds said: “I am thrilled to be taking my career in television to the next level at TVQ and, along with my family, I am excited about the move to Brisbane.”

O’Connell said: “It is timely for my wife and me to move to the next stage of our lives but I am delighted that there will be a continuing relationship with the Network and am looking forward to the changes ahead.”


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