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MediaWorks boss Mark Weldon says he retains his board's confidence

Board meeting held in Auckland, with reporters from media rivals camped outside.

Edwin Mitson
Mon, 02 May 2016

MediaWorks chief executive Mark Weldon has insisted he still has the confidence of the company's board following a meeting in Auckland today.

Mr Weldon was asked by reporters camped outside the television and radio broadcaster's Auckland headquarters if he still had the confidence of his board to which he responded "I think so," Radio New Zealand reported. There was media speculation he could be about to resign following the decision of long-serving newsreader Hilary Barry to leave TV3 – the latest in a string of controversial departures by senior staff. She announced her resignation on Friday and will leave at the end of May.

Long-serving newsroom chief Mark Jennings left TV3 in February and a host of other senior executives across the business have also departed while insiders are feeding stories of low morale and further resignations in the wings. TV3's Newshub team also embarrassed the company led by the former head of the NZX by emailing details of the Reserve Bank's March cut to the official cash rate from an embargoed lock-up to its main newsroom, where it was sent to an external party, leading to the central bank stopping lock-ups.

Last month Oaktree Capital, the US hedge fund that owns Mediaworks, imposed a collar on the company's management which meant they couldn't spend $2 million without recourse to the board.

Former NZX boss Mark Weldon was appointed as chief executive in 2014 and among his changes has been the merger of the company's TV, radio and digital operations into a single entity, Newshub, which launched on February 1 "with a strong emphasis on digital, servicing web, mobile devices and social media."

Earlier today, TVNZ and Fairfax Media announced a collaboration, which would see the state broadcaster's news videos being made available on the Stuff website from May 5.


Edwin Mitson
Mon, 02 May 2016
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MediaWorks boss Mark Weldon says he retains his board's confidence