Qantas awards in-flight ad sales to MCN, moves in-flight news from Nine to Sky News

qantas copyQantas has appointed Multi Channel Network (MCN) as the supplier of its inflight advertising and Sky News as its supplier for inflight news following a competitive tender.

The decision follows an announcement by the airline in April that it was pitching both for in-flight advertising sales and invited all the major free-to-air TV networks to pitch for the news rights. As part of the changes Foxtel and Fox Sports have also been chosen to provide additional programming. The Nine Network currently provides a dedicated news bulletin for the airline, whilst Bauer Media handles ad sales.

“We know that inflight entertainment is a key part of people’s journey. It’s something we invest heavily in and have a plan to keep improving over the next 12 months,” said Olivia Wirth, Qantas Group executive manager for brand, marketing and corporate affairs.

“Sky News, Foxtel and Fox Sports were able to offer us an integrated package of news, entertainment and sport, with a focus on ‘on demand’, which is central to how they already deliver their content.”

The changes are expected to be effective from November 1, 2014 and will no longer see a bespoke news service created for Qantas, with the airline instead taking the most recent Sky News bulletin.

“Everyone at Sky News is proud that we’ve been selected by Qantas as the exclusive supplier of the inflight and lounge television news services. We’re excited about bringing Qantas customers a significantly enhanced and expanded service featuring news, commentary, business news and weather from across all the Sky News channels,” said Angelos Frangopoulos Australian News Channel CEO.

The airline also said there are no plans to increase the amount of inflight advertising that Qantas has currently as a result of the switch from Bauer Media to MCN, but would focus on better integrating advertising to deliver a more targeted result for advertisers.

Anthony Fitzgerald CEO of MCN said it was “delighted” with the news adding: “We see enormous synergy between the premium media environment for Qantas audiences and the premium content offering of our channel partners Foxtel, Sky News and Fox Sports. We look forward to helping Qantas strengthen its video content and video ad sales in 2015.”

The tender itself was part of a broader change in the entertainment options that Qantas offers its customers, which the airline claims will lead to improvements in the options available to consumers.

Qantas has also been involved in a major cost cutting round which has seen it shed more than 5,000 staff.  As Mumbrella revealed yesterday, these changes have also seen the airline lose 40 per cent of its broader marketing team in the recent savage round of job losses, with the carrier flagging a more concerted focus on digital marketing strategies going forward.

Nic Christensen 


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.