Jun 15, 2017

Conflicts of interest abound in the story behind Ten’s collapse

Glenn Dyer and Stephen Mayne have some questions for the players at Ten/Foxtel/News Corp/WIN.

Conflicts of interest continue to emerge involving the Murdoch family in the collapse of the Ten Network. They have been everywhere from the moment Lachlan Murdoch joined the board in 2010, but the latest one raises questions about the role of Siobhan McKenna, who is not only Lachlan Murdoch’s key adviser in his private empire but also a senior executive of News Corp Australia who oversees its broadcasting interests.

As the AFR revealed this morning, Lachlan Murdoch and Bruce Gordon bullied Ten into administration by threatening to personally sue the directors if they drew down on the $200 million CBA facility they personally guarantee, along with James Packer.

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3 thoughts on “Conflicts of interest abound in the story behind Ten’s collapse

  1. Adrian

    Gina got outplayed on the Ten deal. I’d be interested to hear how her relationship goes with the Murdoch’s over the new few years. Other than tax credits, I’m not sure what she got out of the deal.

  2. Reilly57

    At the heart of Network 10 is a public asset namely its broadcast licence and its associated spectrum allocation. Yet I see little action from Mitch Fifield, Minister for Communications to assert the public interest that needs representation in this corporate power play. What I do see is an hasty grab bag of new media laws that, whether intended or not, appear to satisfy special pleadings over public interest. Give the Productivity Commission a year to recommend what changes if any should be adopted especially what special conditions should apply where a single media group comes to predominates in a media market.

    Where is ASIC in regard to minority shareholders interests given that the so-called independent directors seem to be missing in action, tranparency too lies bloodied and beaten. Does ASIC have a position on what seems a prima facie case of related party transactions relating to the 21st Century content package – is the refusal to renegotiate just conveniently timed predatory behaviour.

    Inter-connected here borders on incestuous, a bunch of corporate Hapsburgs – do any of the key players come out of this sorry saga without the taint of naked self interest?

    Finally there are Network 10’s staff and viewers – does anyone give a damn for two essential groups for any media business. Is anyone going to do anything or is something is indeed rotten in the Australian nation.

    There are clearly key figures with sufficient assets to give the network the extra time to turn things around matched with a new realistically priced content agreement. If not then let us have that licence back and with public money and a charter make this network Australia’s Channel 4 – better that then Fox Network Australia Inc. any day. All in favour say aye.

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