20th January, 2012: Multi Channel Network (MCN) is leading the summer ratings race, capturing a 22.6% audience share in the first seven weeks of the official summer ratings period¹. The strong performance was driven by STV’s exclusive, first-run content – including the launch of Cricket Superstar and Wife Swap Australia.
MCN channels delivered strong growth across the full 2011 calendar year, with a 7.3% increase in average audience². This growth was extended over the first seven weeks of summer, with MCN channels increasing audiences by a further 4.0% (vs. pre-Summer)³.
Anthony Fitzgerald, Multi Channel Network CEO, said: “Viewers are hungry for compelling and entertaining content all year round, and over the summer they’ve continued to turn to STV for their fix of exclusive, first-run programming.
“FOX SPORTS’ live and exclusive coverage of the KFC T20 Big Bash League has been a standout success this season, almost doubling audience numbers from the competition series in 2010-11.”
Commencing on December 16th, the KFC T20 Big Bash has seen a 95% year-on-year increase in viewers. The first 20 matches so far has delivered an average audience of 286,000, compared to 147,000 in the same 2010-11 period⁴. The highest-rating match so far was Stars V Thunder on December 17th, attracting an average audience of 478,000 – the 4th highest-rating show ever on Subscription Television⁵.
“The big summer of cricket has seen FOX8 launch the new show, Cricket Superstar, premiering on Wednesday January 4th with an average audience of 105,000. The second episode attracted 162,000 viewers and a reach of 313,000 viewers⁶,” Anthony said.
“This month, LifeStyle YOU’s launch of Wife Swap Australia delivered record-breaking ratings for the channel. The first episode attracted so much attention that #wifeswapau was Australia’s top trending topic on Twitter that evening.”
The January 9th premiere of LifeStyle YOU’s Wife Swap Australia attracted an average total audience of 164,000⁷, making it the channel’s highest-rating program to date.
The early successes follows a solid 2011 which saw the combined FTA and STV audiences grow 3.9% over the full calendar year in the key trading 16-54 demographic⁸. STV viewing rose 3.3%, driven by 7.3% growth among MCN represented channels.
The strong 2011 performance for MCN was propelled by sports programming, with the Wallabies V All Blacks match during the Rugby World Cup making it into the record books as the highest-rating Australian STV program in history.
Anthony said: “The ratings successes MCN has achieved so far is only the beginning. Next month we will be launching two new channels. The ground-breaking STV AFL deal has provided the opportunity to launch FOX Footy. The dedicated, 24/7 AFL channel will see all games broadcast live and available in spectacular high definition. MCN will also be launching A&E, a channel aimed at a 25-40 year old male audience.
“Over the next few weeks, we will see the return of hits including the Comedy Channel’s highest-rating program, Balls of Steel, as well as FOX8’s American Idol, LIFESTYLE Channel’s Selling Houses Australia, showcase’s Tangle; and the much-anticipated premiere of W Channel’s new musical drama, Smash.
“Viewers and advertisers will be the big winners as STV gears up to launch more exclusive, first-run content, and more new local productions than ever before,” he said.
LifeStyle YOU’s Wife Swap Australia airs Mondays, 8:30pm. FOX SPORTS’ KFC T20 Big Bash League concludes January 28th and FOX8’s Cricket Superstar airs every Wednesday, 7:30pm until March 14th.
¹ OzTAM Metro All Homes Panel, 27/11/11-14/01/12 Consolidated to Jan 10th, S-S 0600-2400. P16-54, Share to Selected%.
² OzTam Metro All Homes Panel, Weeks 1 – 53 2011 vs. Weeks 1-52 2010, Consolidated, S-S 0600-2359. Total People, P16-54, Projections, Share to Selected %.
³ OzTAM Metro All Homes, Panel, Wks 49-2 2011/12 vs Wks 7-48 2011, Consolidated to Jan 10th, S-S 0600-2400, P16-54, Projections.
⁴ OzTAM National STV Panel, 27/11/11- 14/01/12 vs. 28/12/10-29/01/11 Consolidated to Jan 10th, S-S 0600-2400. Total People, Projections.
⁵ OzTAM, National STV Homes Panel, Dec 17 2011, Total People, Projections, Consolidated.
⁶ OzTAM National STV Panel, Weeks 04/01/12-14/01/12 Consolidated to Jan 10th, S-S 0600-2400. Total People, Projections, Reach.
⁷ OzTAM National STV Panel, Weeks 10/01/12-14/01/12 Consolidated to Jan 10th, S-S 0600-2400. Total People, Projections, Reach.
⁸ OzTAM Metro All Homes Panel, Weeks 1 – 53 2011 vs. Weeks 1-52 2010, Consolidated, S-S 0600-2400. P16-54, Projections, Share to Selected %.
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Further information: Camille Alarcon, Launch Group (02) 9492 1089 / 0488 176 188
About Multi Channel Network (MCN) www.MCN.com.au Established in 1997, MCN is a joint venture between FOXTEL, AUSTAR, Premier Media Group and XYZ Networks. MCN is responsible for the advertising interests of over fifty national STV channels and over 200 channel and independent websites. MCN is the only media company in Australia to offer digital interactive television advertising via the remote control and video on demand advertising. MCN’s online network ranks at number 21 in Neilson’s top 50 online brands, and is Australia’s 14th largest commercial online network, with a monthly reach of 2.7m individual Australians. For more information: www.MCN.com.au