The radio and outdoor business that was once APN News & Media has shuffled off its unpopular Here There & Everywhere branding in favour of a change to ARN Media.
After its print publishing days, radio was a major focus for the former group of northern NSW and Queensland mastheads. Now it is again: chief executive Ciaran Davis says the force for change was the acquisition of ARN Regional, and recent digital audio investments.
Authorised by a shareholder vote at its annual meeting, the change consigns to history a brand few understood or cared for.
Davis (pictured) says in 2020, it was a metropolitan-based radio business. “Today thanks to our regional acquisition and our investments in digital audio, we are connecting audiences and brands in a market that is worth $1.4billion,” he said.
Today’s business began as a group of regional newspapers News Limited was forced to sell off when it bought Herald & Weekly Times in 1987. The new owners were Australian family members of then “bean baron” and rugby international Tony O’Reilly.
Current News Corp Australia executive chairman Michael Miller is credited with growing the group’s radio interests during the two years he spent running it – after leaving roles at News that included regional director – before returning to News which then bought APN’s newspaper business for a “bargain” $36 million. Most of its print mastheads have since been closed.
Davis told shareholders the future of digital audio held “immense potential for growth, innovation, and cultural impact.
“Our company is very well placed to shape the audio landscape in Australia and that is why you are voting today to change our name from HT&E to ARN Media.”
The now ARN Media owns a range of radio stations around Australia including KIIS 1065 and WSFM in Sydney, CADA in Western Sydney and Katoomba and KIIS 101.1 & GOLD 104.3 in Melbourne, plus 21 regional stations in Victoria.
It co-owns Canberra FM Radio with Southern Cross Austerio and Nova 93.7 Perth with Nova Entertainment, and also owns Hong Kong-based Cody out-of-home and creative agency Emotive.