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NZME Signs Multi-Media Star Simon Barnett

NZME has signed entertainment legend Simon Barnett as a host for Newstalk ZB. Barnett, who is held in the highest regard in broadcasting circles and audiences nationally, was again recently voted amongst the most trusted entertainers in the 2017 Readers Digest Most Trusted People poll.

“Simon is a hugely talented broadcaster and presenter,” says NZME’s Managing Editor Shayne Currie. He has a strong news sense paired with great warmth and empathy, allowing him to connect with New Zealanders. To have that combination of skills is rare and makes Simon one of the best interviewers and talent in the country.”

Barnett has more than 25 years of radio and television experience and has always been a top rating personality.

“Simon will make an outstanding addition to the Newstalk ZB team. He has the natural ability to entertain, inform, inspire, laugh and even make us cry. Simon’s voice was such a comfort and an inspiration to so many as Christchurch picked up the pieces, rebuilding the city, following the earthquake in 2011. He’s interviewed everyone from the Prime Minister on a weekly basis to stars like Oprah Winfrey.”

Currie says this opportunity has opened an exciting new career path for Barnett.

“Simon has always been interested in issues that affect people. He loves talking to people, understanding their story and making a difference. It’s a logical progression for him to work with New Zealand’s preeminent ‘talk’ brand, which ironically takes Simon back to where his career began, at Newstalk ZB, as a 17-year-old. Being part of NZME means there are opportunities within the country’s leading newspaper, The New Zealand Herald and across NZME’s digital platforms,” Currie said.

CEO of NZME Michael Boggs is thrilled to have Barnett heading to the company.

“I am delighted to have Simon joining the NZME team as a member of our Newstalk ZB lineup. I’ve long admired Simon’s authenticity and ability to relate to people on the issues that matter to them. This appointment demonstrates how NZME is delivering on our key priorities through investment in top talent, that in turn grows radio audiences and revenue.”

Barnett will join Newstalk ZB from early 2019 and will continue to be based in Christchurch.


NZME is one of New Zealand’s leading media and entertainment businesses with its brands connecting with almost 3.2 million kiwis[1]. Whether reading, listening, watching or engaging with NZME brands, they can get the content they want - where and when they want it. NZME is listed on the NZX Main Board with a foreign exempt listing on the ASX.

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