Singo says sell­ing to Nine not a done deal

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - LABOR LEADERSHIP - AN­NETTE SHARP

JOHN Sin­gle­ton says ru­mours he has al­ready sold his 32 per cent share in the Mac­quarie Ra­dio net­work to Chan­nel 9 are “pre­ma­ture”, but added he has no wish to be Nine’s ju­nior part­ner.

On Fri­day Sin­gle­ton con­firmed he was ready to sell his stake in the na­tional ra­dio net­work, which owns dom­i­nant talk show sta­tions 2GB in Syd­ney and Mel­bourne’ s 3AW.

“I have no in­ter­est in just be­ing a small in­vestor in a big­ger me­dia op­er­a­tion,” Mr Sin­gle­ton said. “If I’m not able to run the show, I’m not re­ally in­ter­ested any more.”

The Nine- Fair­fax merger was ap­proved by the Aus­tralian Com­pe­ti­tion and Con­sumer Com­mis­sion last week.

Fair­fax has owned 55 per cent of Mac­quarie since their merger in 2015.

Sources said the sale of Sin­gle­ton’s stake in Mac­quarie was signed weeks ago, but was be­ing kept se­cret un­til the merger re­ceived ACCC ap­proval and went to the Nine board for a vote this month. But Sin­gle­ton main­tained the pro­posed $90 mil­lion deal — “which will make Nine and me happy” — was still on the ta­ble.

“I’d rather put my money into the glo­ri­ous Cen­tral Coast now,” Sin­gle­ton said.

Close sources main­tain Sin­gle­ton, at 77, has de­cided he is past want­ing to deal with the dra­mas and headaches as­so­ci­ated with man­ag­ing me­dia stars.

John Sin­gle­ton.

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