Nine Radio (formerly Macquarie Media Limited) is an Australian media company, owned by parent company Nine Entertainment Co. and headquartered in North Sydney, New South Wales. The company operates radio stations nationally in the capital cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth, as well as regional Queensland.

Nine Radio
FormerlyMacquarie Broadcasting Service (1938–2015)
Macquarie Media (2015–20)
Company typeSubsidiary
IndustryBroadcast radio
Founded1938 (1938)
ParentNine Entertainment Co.
WebsiteNine Radio



The company was formerly a publicly-listed company and originally founded in 1938 as the Macquarie Broadcasting Service, adopting the name "Macquarie Media" after being acquired by Fairfax Media in 2015.



2 GB, one of Sydney's premier commercial radio stations, was founded by Theosophical Broadcasting Station Pty Ltd. in 1926, a division of Theosophical Society Adyar. In January 1936, in the depths of the Great Depression, 2 GB and 2UE formed an alliance, Broadcasting Service Association (BSA), to share production facilities for producing radio drama and other locally produced entertainment, which was hugely popular and in better times highly lucrative. The BSA was under joint management of Alfred Edward Bennett and Cecil Vincent Stevenson, managing directors of 2 GB and 2UE respectively. That same year, the controlling interest in 2 GB was purchased by Denison Estates Ltd. A new board of directors was appointed under chairman Sir Hugh Denison and included A. E. Bennett, who continued as station manager, and Frederick Daniell.[1]

In early February 1937 A. E. Bennett hosted a peak conference of commercial radio interests of New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia with a view to expanding the organisation into an inter-state network to secure additional outlets for their material. Those present included Sir John Butters, chairman of BSA, R. E. Denison and Frederick Daniell, representing Denison Estates Ltd.; V. F. Mitchell of 4BC Brisbane; George Bennett, George Millar and Charles A. Fletcher of 2 GB Sydney; C. V. Stevenson and Sydney S. E. Baume (brother of Eric Baume)[2] of 2UE Sydney; John T. Taylor of 3AW Melbourne; Gordon Marsh of 5DN Adelaide; Clive Ogilvy (often misspelled Ogilvie) and A. J. "Jack" Ryan of 2CA Canberra; Russell A. Yeldon of 2WL Wollongong; Eric and O. Robinson of 2HR Hunter River; J. J. Armitage and D. R. Armstrong of Broadcasting Service Association Ltd.[3] In November the same year Bennett was sacked[4] by Denison and Butters from both his managerial position with 2 GB and as a director of BSA, though public pronouncements had him resigning voluntarily. Harold Gordon Horner, New South Wales manager for the Australian Broadcasting Commission, was appointed to take his place.[5]

Macquarie Broadcasting (1938–2015)


In July 1938 Sir Hugh Denison announced a further expansion and reorganisation of the company as the Macquarie Broadcasting Service with a capital of 250,000. The board consisted of Sir Hugh as chairman, Frederick Daniell as executive director, and George Millar as secretary; other founding directors were R. E. Denison, N. L. Shaw, C. Don Service, and S. S. Crick. H. G. Horner of 2 GB, and C. V. Stevenson of 2UE were appointed advisory directors on broadcasting and technical matters respectively. George Anderson of 2GZ was appointed network sales manager. Affiliated stations in the new network were 2CA Canberra; 2 GB and 2UE Sydney; 2WL South Coast; 2HR Hunter River; 3AW Melbourne; 3HA Hamilton; 3TR Sale; 3SH Swan Hill; 4BH Brisbane; 5DN Adelaide; 5RM Renmark; 6PR Perth; 6KG Kalgoorlie. Head office was at Savoy House, 29 Bligh Street, Sydney, and the Melbourne office at 37 Queen Street.[citation needed]

The new company purchased the worldwide transcription business of 2 GB and BSA and placed under the direction of Frederick Daniell, with sales managed by Clive Ogilvy and Grace Gibson. The BSA Players were reorganised as the Macquarie Players, with their recording studios "Macquarie Productions" at Pagewood and at 296 Pitt Street and 29 Bligh Street. Contracted actors included James Raglan, Lou Vernon, Peter Finch, Betty Suttor and Harry Dearth.[6] The company became a major shareholder in Australian and New Zealand Theatres, Ltd, which had taken over the entertainment business J. C. Williamson's, and in Broadcast Enterprises Ltd, of London. The Radio Theatre Guild was taken over as an organisation for training and developing talent. The record production, cutting and pressing business Featuradio was purchased and reorganised as Australian Record Company under management of Charles H. Gendle.[7]

During the 1950s, the Macquarie Broadcasting Service and 2 GB Radio awarded the Macquarie Awards for theatrical performances.[8]

From inception and until the early 1960s, the network was renowned for its high quality productions of variety programs, quizzes, dramas and serials. Most of these programs originated from Sydney. One of the most important Macquarie drama series was The General Motors Hour, 15 episodes of which can be accessed online.[9]

As well as being heard on all of the network's affiliates, right across the country, many Macquarie programs were also syndicated to non-network stations. With the coming of television in 1956, the radio audience for these types of programs dropped. Macquarie stations solved the problem by quickly increasing their news, talk, commentary and current affairs content.[10]

In 1973, a significant year because it was the 50th anniversary of broadcasting in Australia, the Macquarie Network had the following affiliates: 2 GB Sydney; 2CA Canberra; 2PK Parkes; 2WL Wollongong; 3AW Melbourne; 4BH Brisbane; 4BU Bundaberg; 4GY Gympie; 5DN Adelaide; 6IX Perth; 6BY Bunbury; 6MD Merredin; 6WB Katanning; 7HO Hobart.[10]

During the 1930s, 40s, 50s, 60s and 70s, there were a number of other commercial radio networks, another key one being the Major Network. Other former radio networks include: Federal Network; Associated Broadcasters of Australia; AWA Broadcasting. There were also a number of State-based networks.

By the late 1980s Macquarie had become Australia's only national commercial radio network. However, during the last three decades, a number of new networks have arisen, including the Macquarie Regional RadioWorks, unrelated to the Macquarie Radio Network. In 2007, 13 networks owned or controlled 80 per cent of the 261 Australian commercial radio stations[11]

In 2010, Macquarie entered a joint venture with Pacific Star Network to relaunch Melbourne radio station 3MP as MTR 1377. On 2 March 2012, MTR ceased operations when Pacific Star was unable to pay any monies owed to Macquarie.[12]

On 31 August 2011, Macquarie acquired the Smart Radio Network which encompasses 4VL, Triple C FM, 4HI, 4ZR, 4LM, 4SB and Hot Country network at a cost of $6 million. These stations are part of Macquarie Regional Radio, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Macquarie Radio Network.

Macquarie Media (2015–2019)


In December 2014, Macquarie announced that it had agreed to a merger with Fairfax Media. Under the deal, Fairfax gained a 55% share in the Macquarie Radio Network, with Macquarie's existing shareholders holding the remaining 45%.[13] To comply with legislation only allowing two radio licences to be held by one party in each market, stations 2CH and 4LM were sold;[14] and the merger was completed in March 2015.[15][16][17][18]

In April 2015 a number of programming changes occurred at Macquarie's stations. At 4BC Brisbane, Breakfast presenters Ian Skippen and Loretta Ryan, Mornings host Patrick Condren, Nights host Walter Williams and Weekend Breakfast presenter Murray Shoring were dismissed, as well as sister Magic 882 Nights' presenter Jo Henderson. In total, 18 positions were cut, and programming replaced by networked shows from 2 GB and 2UE.[19][20][21] In Sydney, 2UE's afternoon announcer Angela Catterns was dismissed, as was the entire newsroom, and the station's news services were replaced by the Macquarie's national news service[22] – while in Melbourne all of Magic 1278's lineup and most of the production team was cut.[23]

On 30 October 2015 it was announced the company had divested its regional assets, selling eight radio stations to Resonate Broadcasting.[24][25] On 6 November it was announced that all of Magic 882's programming – with the exception of nights – would be networked from Magic 1278 in Melbourne.[26]

On 10 November 2015 the company changed its name to Macquarie Media Limited.[27] Following its merger with Fairfax in 2018, Nine acquired John Singleton's share in the company in 2019, increasing its stake in the company to 87%.[28] In October 2019 Nine increased its shareholding to over 90% after purchasing stakes from Mark Carnegie (3.6 percent) and Alan Jones (1.3 percent) to allow Nine to compulsorily acquire the remaining shares.[29][30] In January 2020, Nine confirmed that the Macquarie Media brand would be phased out.[31]

Nine Radio (2020–present)


On 21 January 2020, Nine Radio announced they would close the Macquarie Sports Radio network in February, reverting stations to their pre–2016 brands—2UE, 4BH and Magic 1278—with a classic hits music format. In April, Steve Jacobs was announced as breakfast presenter of the music stations, commencing 27 April.[32]



Nine Radio

Callsign Frequency Location Launched date Format
2GB 873 AM
Sydney 23 August 1926; 97 years ago (1926-08-23) News and Talk
3AW 693 AM
Melbourne 22 February 1932; 92 years ago (1932-02-22) News and Talk
4BC 882 AM
Brisbane 16 August 1930; 93 years ago (1930-08-16) News and Talk
6PR 882 AM
Perth 14 October 1931; 92 years ago (1931-10-14) News and Talk



The following stations are run under a lease agreement by Ace Radio.

Station Frequency Call-sign Location Launched date Format
2UE 954 AM
2UE Sydney 26 January 1925; 99 years ago (1925-01-26) Oldies
Magic 1278 1278 AM
3EE Melbourne 8 September 1935; 88 years ago (1935-09-08) Oldies
4BH 1116 AM
4BH Brisbane 2 January 1932; 92 years ago (1932-01-02) Oldies


  1. ^ "Station 2GB". The Sydney Morning Herald. No. 30, 847. New South Wales, Australia. 13 November 1936. p. 14. Retrieved 28 October 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  2. ^ "Eric Baume's Brother Suddenly Leaves Job". Daily News (Sydney). Vol. 1, no. 31. New South Wales, Australia. 6 January 1939. p. 2. Retrieved 29 October 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  3. ^ "Radio Network System". The Sun (Sydney). No. 8457. New South Wales, Australia. 10 February 1937. p. 23. Retrieved 28 October 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  4. ^ "Verdict for A. E. Bennett". The Sun (Sydney). No. 9028. New South Wales, Australia. 12 December 1938. p. 3. Retrieved 28 October 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  5. ^ "Changes in 2GB". The Sun (Sydney). No. 8696. New South Wales, Australia. 17 November 1937. p. 2. Retrieved 28 October 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  6. ^ Lane, Richard The Golden Age of Australian Radio Drama Melbourne University Press 1994 ISBN 0-522-84556-8
  7. ^ "Radio Company Formed". The Sun (Sydney). No. 1841. New South Wales, Australia. 10 July 1938. p. 15 (News Section). Retrieved 28 October 2017 – via National Library of Australia.
  8. ^ "Macquarie Awards". The Sydney Morning Herald. No. 35, 929. 16 February 1953. p. 4. Retrieved 27 December 2023 – via National Library of Australia.
  9. ^ [dead link]
  10. ^ a b "The Magic Spark", R.R. Walker, 1973, The Hawthorn Press.
  11. ^ Griffen-Foley, Bridget, Changing Stations: The Story of Australian Commercial Radio, UNSW Press, 2009; referenced as Commercial Radio: A Snapshot, CRA, Sydney, 2007
  12. ^ Butler, Ben; Battersby, Lucy (2 March 2012). "'No worries' as MTR goes off the air". The Age. Fairfax Media. Archived from the original on 4 March 2012. Retrieved 5 March 2012.
  13. ^ Janda, Michael (22 December 2014). "Fairfax and Macquarie to merge radio network". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Archived from the original on 19 June 2015. Retrieved 9 April 2015.
  14. ^ "Macquarie Radio Network to sell two radio stations". 2 April 2015. Archived from the original on 15 April 2015. Retrieved 9 April 2015.
  15. ^ "And the deal is done...finally!". Radio Today. 31 March 2015. Archived from the original on 1 April 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  16. ^ "MRN Fairfax merger complete". 1 April 2015. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 1 April 2015.
  17. ^ Sinclair, Lara (9 April 2015). "2UE News to go off air as newsroom merges with 2GB". The Australian. News Limited. AAP. Retrieved 11 April 2015.
  18. ^ "Completion of Fairfax Radio Network Merger with Macquarie Radio Network" (Press release). Fairfax Media. 31 March 2015. Archived from the original on 6 April 2015. Retrieved 11 April 2015. Fairfax Media Limited ... today announced the completion of the merger of its Fairfax Radio Network ... with Macquarie Radio Network ...
  19. ^ "Media Statement from 4BC". 4BC. Fairfax Media. 10 April 2015. Archived from the original on 11 April 2015. Retrieved 10 April 2015.
  20. ^ "Axe falls at 4BC and Magic 882". Radio Today. 10 April 2015. Archived from the original on 13 April 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
  21. ^ Cooper, Nathanael (14 April 2015). "Plug pulled on 4BC Brisbane boss". The Courier-Mail. Fairfax Media. Archived from the original on 14 April 2015. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  22. ^ Christensen, Nic (11 April 2015). "Macquarie/Fairfax Radio merger described as 'hostile takeover' as 2UE axes Angela Catterns". mUmBRELLA. Archived from the original on 13 April 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
  23. ^ "Magic gone from Magic! Entire on air line-up sacked". 13 April 2015. Archived from the original on 16 October 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2015.
  24. ^ "Queensland radio company triples its size with latest acquisition". 30 October 2015. Archived from the original on 31 October 2015. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  25. ^ "Resonate buy MRN regional network". Radio Today. 30 October 2015. Archived from the original on 31 October 2015. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  26. ^ "MRN announces changes to build a 'Magic Network'". 6 November 2015. Archived from the original on 10 March 2016. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  27. ^ "Macquarie Radio Network to change name". 12 October 2015. Archived from the original on 7 March 2016. Retrieved 25 October 2015.
  28. ^ "Singleton sells Macquarie stake to Nine, Carnegie expected to follow". The Australian Financial Review. 24 September 2019. Archived from the original on 24 September 2019.
  29. ^ "Carnegie cashes in his stake in Macquarie Media". Radio Info. 4 October 2019. Archived from the original on 4 October 2019. Retrieved 4 October 2019.
  30. ^ Duke, Jennifer (4 October 2019). "Nine secures takeover of Macquarie Media as Alan Jones, Mark Carnegie accept offer". The Sydney Morning Herald. Archived from the original on 4 October 2019. Retrieved 4 October 2019.
  31. ^ NEWSNine drops Macquarie Media branding for radio assets Archived 6 January 2020 at the Wayback Machine Mumbrella 6 January 2020
  32. ^ Challenor, Jake (19 April 2020). "Steve Jacobs to host breakfast on Nine's music stations". Radio Today (Australia). Retrieved 19 April 2020.