Newshub to close - website to shut down, up to 300 job losses

April 10, 2024 12:51 pm

Newshub’s closure and other production cuts at Three have been confirmed, with the loss of up to 300 jobs.

The closure includes the Newshub website.

Warner Bros Discovery has told staff today that there is no deal “at this stage” with any third parties to provide a pared-back news service, including a 6pm bulletin for the Three channel.

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The final Newshub at 6pm bulletin is scheduled for Friday, July 5.

A Newshub worker said confirmation of the closure had been met with silence initially. “Inevitable but gutting,” they said.

Newshub staff – including high-profile hosts such as Paddy Gower, Mike McRoberts and Samantha Hayes – learned their fate at an all-staff meeting that started at 11am at the Dalmatian Hall in Auckland’s Eden Terrace and via Zoom for non-Auckland staff. The meeting lasted about 20 minutes.

Warner Bros Discovery has been in a five-week consultation period with staff after announcing the proposed closure of Newshub – including its 6pm news bulletin, website and entire newsroom – from late June. The American media giant has also proposed production cutbacks which will affect many popular local shows, including The Traitors, The Block NZ and Married at First Sight NZ.

There has been a glimmer of hope that news content might remain on Warner Bros Discovery’s Three channel – either in the form of a pared-back news service offered by a rival media organisation or if the company adopts any part of at least two staff proposals, including one led by senior investigations reporter Michael Morrah.

As Media Insider revealed exclusively yesterday, Warner Bros Discovery has raised the possibility of a pared-back news service with other media companies and private individuals over the past five weeks. Talks have been held in secrecy, with some parties even signing non-disclosure agreements.

At today’s all-staff meeting, Warner Bros Discovery’s New Zealand boss Glen Kyne said staff would be advised if any deal could be made.

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“You could tell it was going to be bad as the three on stage looked so grim,” said a Newshub worker. “Michael Morrah [is] giving them a bit of s*** re not really looking at [the] staff proposal.”