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New Zealand's Stuff Group to produce news programme after Warner Bros Discovery closes newsroom

Published 04/15/2024, 08:46 PM
Updated 04/15/2024, 08:50 PM
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The Warner Bros logo is seen during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in Cannes, France, June 22, 2022.    REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo
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By Lucy Craymer

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - New Zealand media site Stuff Group said on Tuesday it had signed an agreement with Warner Bros Discovery (NASDAQ:WBD) to provide Warner Bros Discovery's New Zealand television channel with a 6 p.m. daily news programme.

The move ends weeks of concern that New Zealand would have just one English television news provider.

Warner Bros Discovery, which owns the news service Newshub that airs on television channel Three, said in February it planned to shut down its newsroom from July to reduce costs. This would have left state-owned but editorially independent TVNZ as the dominant producer of broadcast news for the New Zealand market.

Stuff said in a story on their news website that from July 6, Stuff would produce an hour daily news show Monday to Friday, with a 30 minute programme on weekends.

Glen Kyne, a senior vice president, at Warner Bros Discovery in Japan, Australia and New Zealand, said in a story on stuff.co.nz that Warner Bros Discovery had received a number of proposals to produce a news segment for the television site and had opted for Stuff.

“We were deeply aware of the dampening effect the Newshub closure would have on media plurality and we’re very pleased that New Zealanders will be able to have a choice about what news they watch at 6 p.m.,” he said.

Stuff Owner and Publisher Sinead Boucher said Stuff’s proposal to Warner Bros Discovery was to deliver high-quality news content.

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The Warner Bros logo is seen during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in Cannes, France, June 22, 2022.    REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo

No financial details of the deal were released.

Boucher bought Stuff Group in 2020 from Australian broadcaster Nine Entertainment Co Holdings Ltd for NZ$1 to return the news organisation to New Zealand ownership. Stuff Group produces several newspapers including the Post, the Press and the Waikato Times.

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