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Newstalk ZB Bringing In Early-Bird Scene-Setter

Media Release
9 March 2005

NewstalkZB, broadcast in 23 markets around New Zealand, will provide an early-bird news and information service from next week.

On weekday mornings from Monday (March 14), NewstalkZB will introduce 5.30 Live, half an hour ahead of its first major news bulletin, currently broadcast from 6am. It will also bring in a special rural briefing just before 5.30 Live.

"The current 6am expanded bulletin is not being replaced," said Bill Francis, general manager of talk programming. "The new 5.30 Live scene-setter will be an additional feature.

"What we're offering is a 'heads-up' on the day for those people who are already up and about. Newsreader Bernadine Oliver-Kerby will be part of the 5.30 Live team, as will our news editors in the main centres," he said.

"It will mean cutting back the overnight talkback a little but the benefit is that we'll be giving people a head start to their day."

NewstalkZB's breakfast programme is by far the most popular morning programme, with a weekly audience cumulative share of 271,000.

Bill Francis said 5.30 Live would be another innovation that would enhance NewstalkZB's dominant position in radio news.


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