EXCLUSIVE | Grant Denyer likely to stay in breakfast as Kate Langbroek departs SCA
On Thursday morning after their show had just finished broadcasting across Sydney, the 2DAY FM breakfast team were told the show would not be continuing past Friday
While many industry observers were not completely surprised by the move due to the low numbers the show starring Grant Denyer, Ed Kavalee and Ash London was achieving there’s a lot more to this story than first thought.
As first revealed by TV Blackbox in July Southern Cross Austereo had been trying to secure Denyer’s services exclusively in a tussle with Network 10. Since that initial report it’s understood SCA had been pressuring Denyer to re-sign but Denyer was still considering his options.
Sources tell us Denyer does well in focus groups and the Grant, Ed and Ash show suffered significant drops in listeners whenever he was away.
Indeed, Denyer had taken the struggling show from 2.3% to 4.6%, which is the highest ratings the show has had in the 5 years since Kyle and Jackie O left. When Denyer was away during the most recent survey due to a back injury the show fell 1.1% to just 3.1%.
In July Denyer’s wife Chezzie told TV Blackbox:
“Grant likes radio and he’s proud of the growth of 2Day FM Breakfast. Although his contract is up at the end of the year, it is a major commitment so we haven’t made any decisions about next year”.
TV Blackbox can reveal SCA had been in negotiations with Grant and Chezzie about moving the family to Sydney but they confided to production staff they were hesitant about making such a big move from their Bathurst property.
The Denyer’s and SCA have been approached for comment but did not respond to calls at the time of writing.
Radio insiders say one of the biggest issues with the show was the fact most of the cast did not live in Sydney. Ash London was broadcasting from the Sydney studio by herself most mornings with Denyer in Bathurst and Ed Kavalee in Melbourne. Filming commitments meant Denyer was often in Sydney but Kavalee rarely made the trip up which made local references difficult.
The show was also facing financial pressures from declining revenue.
But today’s announcement is not bad news for the team. TV Blackbox understands SCA intends to keep all three onboard in 2020.
It has already been announced London will continue to host Ash London Live nationally from 6.30pm weeknights.
Kavalee has been filling in for Kate Langbroek on the Hughesy and Kate program and will become the permanent replacement for Langbroek who is set to finish at the end of the year. Langbroek is currently living in Italy and would not commit to anything beyond a 12 month contract when she was renegotiating with ARN in 2017. It’s why negotiations with ARN fell apart with Langbroek and Dave Hughes moving across to the HIT Network, away from KIIS. Having already finished a two year sting on HIT, word is she is calling it quits.
So where does that leave Denyer?
Our sources say SCA will attempt to launch a new breakfast show in December with a new team built around Denyer, based in Sydney. The current production team are likely to stay on and spend the next few months building the new show. Until then 2DAY FM will play wall-to-wall music with Content Director Jamie Angel.
TV Blackbox understands contract negotiations are still taking place with Langbroek for 2020.