MediaWorks NZ Ltd announced the appointment of Ian Audsley as Executive Director, TV. Mr Audsley, formerly Chief Operating Officer of the Nine Network in Australia, will join the Board of MediaWorks NZ Ltd and commence work in January.
Generally regarded as “a tough bugger” across the Tasman (not that there are many shrinking violets that high up in the networks either side of the ditch), Mr Audsley arrives on a 12-month fixed-term contract, part of his brief being to find his own successor.
Whether or not he’s going to be the guy to make all the unpopular decisions, take the flak and then leave the company in the hands of somebody not tainted by association remains to be seen, but the NBR coverage of his appointment isn’t optimistic.
Someone who says to the press, “Never mind what you read about me on Google,” is obviously preceded by a reputation.
Some of the comments (we tried hard to find positive ones) were:
So long, mate
NINE’S chief operating officer Ian Audsley was not the most popular man at the network, so there were no tears this week when chief executive David Gyngell told staff Audsley was leaving on April 9.
Have axe, will travel
THE Nine Network’s former chief operating officer (and axe-wielder) Ian Audsley has turned up at Lexicon Partners, a Sydney-based advisory and investment firm that has, according to its own spin, worked with many of Australia’s leading media businesses. Audsley, who was seen inside Nine as former chief Sam Chisholm’s hatchet man … famously refused to pay for the broadcast of Graham Kennedy’s funeral, a decision later reversed because of a public outcry.
I’d be shitting myself too if I saw Ian Audsley wandering through my workplace.
According to the press release announcing his appointment, Mr Audsley, 48, has a distinguished almost 20 year record of management in Australian television, having been operations head for two regional television stations, Deputy Managing Director of Network Seven’s Melbourne station and Director of Operations for the Seven Network, culminating in being a Director and Chief Operating Officer of the Nine Network in Sydney.
Ian Audsley said, “I accepted this role based on commitment from the Board that they want to grow and develop this business. The Board sees substantial opportunities for innovation, particularly in the digital and online environment. My focus will be on just that – growing the business and capitalising on the new opportunities that exist for leading media organisations like MediaWorks.”
Well, you didn’t really expect him to say, “I’m going to slash and burn my way through Flower Street and then go home,” did you?