it began broadcasting in Wollongong with one station in 1963, the
growth of the WIN Television Network is one of this country’s most
outstanding success stories. Bruce
Gordon acquired control of the company in 1979 and initiated a period
of growth which has seen the Network spread to Queensland, Victoria,
Tasmania and Western Australia. It is now the largest regional television
broadcaster in Australia and is the fourth largest in Australia
behind Networks Nine, Seven, and Ten. The WIN Network covers an
area greater in size than Europe. WIN’s expansion into South and
Western Australia increased the total potential audience to 4.842
million people across Australia.
inaugural growth phase of the company began with the acquisition
of television RTQ7 Rockhampton, radio station i98FM Wollongong and
film and television production company, Crawfords Productions, in
Melbourne. The most prominent change the regional television industry
has experienced, was brought about by the 1987 Government Legislation
introducing television aggregation which combined solus television
markets into larger service areas giving viewers a choice of three
channels whereas previously there had been only one.
New South Wales and the ACT were the first to take on this new challenge
by expanding the Wollongong, Orange, Wagga and Canberra markets.
New television facilities were built in these cities and WIN’s viewing
audience increased to 1.25 million people. Queensland soon followed,
with the provision of a service to 1.35 million people from Cairns
in the far north through Townsville, Mackay, Rockhampton, Bundaberg,
Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba. WIN soon emerged as the number one
rating regional Network in these two states.
aggregation of TV stations proved a costly exercise in expansion
for the group, increasing staff numbers and facilities threefold.
At that time, Gordon decided to increase his shareholding and privatised
the company in 1991. To service a growing number of national and
multi-national clients, WIN established a National Sales organisation,
Nine Affilliate Sales, in 1992 with offices in Sydney, Melbourne
and Brisbane. This has grown to become the premier regional sales
representation company in Australia.
a name change took place to better reflect its business and the
national sales arm of the Corporation is now known as WIN NBN Sales.
A take-over of the publicly listed ENT Ltd was completed in September
1994 bringing to the group two additional aggregated television
markets. One being Victoria, which services 1.093 million people
in the regional areas of Mildura and Albury in the north, through
Gippsland, Ballarat and Bendigo to Warrnambool in the south, and
the other, comprising the whole state of Tasmania delivering 480,000
people with one station in Hobart and another in Launceston, which
also covers the northern areas of Devonport and Burnie. The addition
of these two states made WIN the number one rating Network in regional
July 1998 acquisition of MTN Television in Griffith, New South Wales
just preceded the network’s expansion into Western Australia where
60 transmitters were installed across the State and commenced broadcasting
March 1999. In August 1999 the South Australian stations, SES Mt.
Gambier and RTS Riverland were acquired giving WIN a presence in
every State of Australia and taking the total number of stations
in the network to 26. WIN Corporation also owns a 44% shareholding
in STW 9, Perth.
WIN Television Network has the largest terrestrial coverage of any
television group in Australia and possibly the world. On the east
coast of Australia and Tasmania, WIN is affiliated with the Nine
Network. In Western Australia, which is a two-station market, WIN
has exclusive rights to Nine and Ten Network programming although
the base format is Nine Network delivered by satellite to Kununurra
in the north, Albany in the south and Eucla in the east.
engineers were challenged with Western Australia’s vastness, covering
a geographical area, one-third of Australia’s land mass. In South
Australia, which are one station markets, the programming is made
up of the best from each of the three commercial networks. Businesses
in the group, other than television, include Wollongong’s No.1 radio
station i98 fm, Crawford Productions Ltd – Australia’s oldest and
most distinguished film and television production house, Broadcast
Transmission Services specialising in operations, maintenance and
installation services to the broadcast and telecommunication industries.
Properties Pty Ltd which controls holdings of commercial and residential
property and the land development company, Mt. Leslie Estates Pty
Ltd. WIN Corporation, which now employs approximately 850 Australians,
has experienced outstanding growth over the past twenty years and
the new millenium sees this continuing.