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  • Darrell Pont


Updated: May 17, 2022

Media News of the FORTNIGHT

Seven West Media has completed the acquisition of the Prime regional TV network, consolidating the partners who have worked together for many years into one entity.

Originally announced in November, the acquisition extends the already significant reach of SWM into regional Australia, with Prime the #1 regional network.

Off the back of a successful year, securing 39.7% commercial audience share (Total People) in 2021, Seven will be hoping to replicate the success of the Tokyo Olympics games with the Winter Olympics and Paralympic games in Q1 2022.


While final results are still to come in, Australians were estimated to spend $21 billion during the Boxing Day sale period from December 26 2021 to January 15 2022, which was a 12.6% increase versus pre-pandemic years. Data from the National Retail Association (NRA) predicted a +4% increase in retail spending in VIC, and +6% increase in QLD.

Long lockdown periods in the second half of the year and ‘forced saving’ is one of the likely causes for the increase in spending. However, it may potentially have been impacted by the rapid rise in national COVID cases over the holiday period. With significant increases in cases, consumers are also expected to have pulled back spend in the hospitality industry.


The last consumer report for 2021 saw the third week of December virtually unchanged YOY with w/c 19th Dec 2021 at 108.4 vs Dec 19th/20th 2020 at 109.0. This week continued to be in line with the 2021 weekly average of 108.1.

Opposing the previous week’s report, Consumer Confidence was up in NSW (+4.8pts) and VIC. Whereas, QLD, WA, SA & TAS saw modest drops. The small increase was driven by positivity in relation to personal finances and economic conditions moving forward.


Across w/c 19th & 26th December, which covered the Christmas and New Years ratings period, the majority of programming consisted of news, sport, quiz shows and entertainment inc. movies. Seven Network drew the highest overall network share for both w/c 19th & 26th December at 30.7% and 34.3% respectively. These share figures were driven by consistent viewership of Seven News and The Ashes across the weeks.

Week commencing 19th December saw 972k people tune in to Nine’s Carols by Candlelight on Christmas Eve – the highest viewership for any program of the week. Comparatively, Seven’s Carols in the Domain, which aired the night prior, saw 638k total people tune in.

Looking at week commencing 26th December overall, the week's ratings were driven by The Ashes cricket coverage, on Seven, which peaked at 1.07m for total people on 27th December. 959k total people tuned into ABC’s coverage of NYE entertainment on Sydney Harbour, peaking at 1.42m for the midnight fireworks.

Source: Nielsen eTAM (Dec-Jan 2021)


Over the two week Christmas and New Year period there was a combined 1,545.8 Million minutes of BVOD viewed.

ABC continued its strong December viewership (w/c 19 Dec) taking 7 of the top 10 programs with Christmas film “Piney: The Lonesome Pine” comfortably topping the list having 175,000 devices tune in - a huge 297% more viewers than the second most viewed program.

Moving into the New year (w/c 26 Dec), viewing was dispersed across the different media outlets with SBS, ABC and Foxtel all having multiple programs within the top 10. SBS took the top spot of the week with “Framed”, followed closely by ABC’s “The Yearly with Charlie Pickering” and Sex and the City’s new spin-off “And just like that…” on Foxtel.

Overall viewing was saw an increase of 87.8 million minutes versus the previous week.


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