The Sydney Morning Herald reports at least one of the three major US over-the-air television networks is believed to be exploring potential strategic options with Ten Network Holdings, but it is not known how advanced the talks are. Talks with ITV held earlier this year were understood to be ”preliminary” and had ”not gone anywhere”.
Crikey reminds us “TEN is virtually in the hands of the Commonwealth Bank, which has lent the network $200 million for the next four years. That loan has no restrictions because it is guaranteed by Murdoch, James Packer and Bruce Gordon. ”
The Age quotes unnamed sources on possible cuts to News: “There’ll be at least 50 staff going from the various programs that are being axed but that’s a very, very conservative estimate. It could be much higher.”
The Australian notes that TEN’s board is also poised to make a decision on Wake Up today: “TEN executives will discuss giving Wake Up another six months by moving it from Manly beach to a studio location, with new hosts; or they may decide to axe it altogether.”
Elsewhere it reports “TEN will confirm breakfast program Wake Up will be the major casualty of the changes and the early morning and late night news bulletins will also close.
“TEN Eyewitness News will remain state-based with local content and a national news bulletin will not be introduced, as speculated. Initially, US content will replace Wake Up, which has performed poorly…”
Last week TV Tonight hinted that TEN was poised to abandon Wake Up and is considering a replacement breakfast show out of its Pyrmont studio.
Queenscliff Surf Life Saving Club president Kevin Harris has also told News Corp, “We hope that if the Wake Up show does cease, then TEN will continue to use the space as a studio.
“After all, they’ve invested a lot of money in creating a working studio and it’s pretty special.”
Amid a backdrop of alarming courtroom revelations last week, it can’t be easy for staff to face multiple and speculative reports.
It’s time for leaders to lead.