Rumours: GTV9, Top Gear… and Seven’s digital?

GTV9 to be sold? Top Gear won by Nine? Seven to announce digital plans later today?

GTV9The rumour mill is in overdrive on three fronts today:

1. GTV9 Melbourne is close to finalising a sale.

2. Nine is set to announce it has successfully nabbed Top Gear from SBS.

3. Seven will unveil its digital channel plans today.

Nine put off its sale of its studio in Bendigo Street, Richmond in June 2008, withdrawing the property from sale following the global credit crunch. But TV Tonight hears it has been back on the market with a deal very close. The heritage-protected building was constructed in 1908 as part of the Wertheim Piano Factory, and has been home to many iconic Australian programmes including In Melbourne Tonight, New Faces, Hey Hey It’s Saturday, The Footy Show, Sale of the Century, Family Feud, Temptation and yes, The Don Lane Show.

Top Gear:
TV Tonight
hears Nine’s bid for the rights to the motoring hit has been successful. Expect an announcement shortly -possibly as early as today. Now confirmed.

Industry whispers suggest the Seven Network will unveil its digital plans to advertisers today. Expect an outcome before the day is out. Now Confirmed.

16 Responses

  1. Please channel 9 can you tell us why you have not signed on with Foxtel/Austar listings?? We like to watch several programmes, in fact many , and don’t know when & where they are on now also if we want to record onto Mystar we have to record from eg 5.30 to 11.30 if we want to record a 1 hour programme at 8.30 to 9.30. It is rediculous and we’re sure you will lose a lot of viewers including us! Please do something about it . Don’t suggest we buy a TV guide book because as pensioners we only Just afford our 1 pleasure, Austar!

  2. A sad, sad day when GTV Nine is sold.

    Australia is fast becoming one big ‘inner city lifestyle’ unit dwelling nightmare – with almost All of it’s physical TV history erased – much like that vandal Allan Bond did to the archival quad videotapes stored in the vaults of Nine many years ago.

    So very sad.

  3. Brian,
    What type of financial figures have you prepared to back up your proposal that the owners of GTV (largely a financial consortium) should devote the Richmond real estate to TV nostalgia?
    What type of yield should shareholders expect?

  4. I am truly surprised at Top Gear – how on earth can you put this show on a commercial network?

    @ Neon I think Test Drive was their ‘car’ show, and as you rightly point out it was actually a 30 min advert for whoever felt like paying the money.

    If I remember rightly SBS had to dig in a little bit and refuse to bow to advertisers – do we really think Nine will do the same?

  5. Pretty shameful that Nine is putting GTV on the market (perfect for a hundred or so apartments, no doubt) when they had a golden opportunity to turn the site into something similar to Universal Studios in Hollywood, minus the rides and live outdoor performances.

    Considering the significance of the studios themselves and the events that have been produced from there, they should have gone at least for that option–many of the Nine staff would most likely been favorable to such a venture, I’m certain some of those in semi-retirement such as Pete Smith and others from the live variety era would have been delighted to be the public faces of an attraction such as this.

    There was a similar set up called Studio City run by a former producer, Bob Phillips, that was in business for many years, with only the remote location being the factor that kept a lot of people away. And many of these permanent attractions are not instant money spinners–ACMI in Federation Square is one example–but GTV would have done very well (they could have called themselves with the title they used at the beginning of every IMT: ‘Television City, Melbourne’) and would be the perfect opportunity for cross promotion of their current schedules…..probably all wishful thinking these days.

  6. Nine was to show a one of Mythbusters about a year ago but it never happened. I hate when the big boys buy up good shows from SBS and ABC only to mess them up. As long as Nine doesn’t get the UK TG I’ll be happy. I didn’t mind the local version but please no Warne and not on Nine!

  7. Noooooo, not Top Gear! Nine will destroy it! They better put it on GO, but because only 50% of homes have digital, i find that unlikely.

    Is it just the Aussie TG or is it TG fullstop? Not that i hated it, but i’m hoping its just the Aussie TG.

    That’s one of the few shows i watch on SBS and i believe it will heavily impact SBS. It’s easily one of the drawcards for SBS and the loss of TG will be massive.

    Here’s hoping another network don’t plan on outbidding SBS for Mythbusters when the renewal is up for grabs.

    A sad, sad day in Aussie TV history.

  8. Well that is a bit of a bugger then….I realise that Nine need to update with the times, but to lose such a great place as GTV9, I am shocked, especially after the success with Hey Hey. If Hey Hey was to return next year, I wonder where they would film it?

  9. Great news if SBS has lost Top Gear Australia. That means more money – a lot more money – for producing programs that actually have a point.

    Nine will kill TGA (well, kill it more than it’s already killed itself, anyway!) by turning it into product placement central. Remember their last car program? No? I’m sure the ad agencies do 😉

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