Nine Network Australia
In 1960 Frank Hewson Packer's company Consolidated Press, which already owned TCN9 Sydney, bought GTV9 Melbourne. Rupert Murdoch bought 25% of these 2 stations from Packer in 1962.
In 1963 a coaxial cable link between Sydney and Melbourne formed the National Television Network between the 2 stations.
In 1974 Frank Packer died. His eldest son, Robert Clyde Packer, would have inherited the network, but the two had had a falling out and Robert had moved to the USA, so the network was inherited by Frank's younger son Kerry Francis Bullmore Packer.
The introduction of colour television in 1975 was very popular, especially with Channel 9, who's profit went throught the roof with the Sydney-Melbourne link as well as colour. The main type of programme which gained from colour was sport, which was brought to life on the screen. Nine revolutionised sports coverage, broadcasting golf, tennis and rugby league in colour, and spending millions on improving communications on courses, raising prize money and simply jazzing them up.
Nine decided to bid for the rights to the cricket in 1976, which had been held by the ABC since television began in 1956. The ACB pushed asside the bid, and signed the ABC on for another 3-year contract. Kerry Packer was furious, and after offering 7 times the amount of money, and still being knocked back, he decided to take them head on start his own competition. Packer worked in secrecy, and after offering a lot more money to players, signed up 13 of Australia's top cricketers. The original cricket series could not compete, so they merged and Nine has had the television rights ever since.
In March 1975 both stations started full-time broadcasting in colour.
In January 1987 Alan Bond bought Nine for around $1,055,000,000. Alan Bond already owned STW9 Perth and QTQ9 Brisbane. To help pay for the puchase, Alan Bond created a new company, Bond Media, which soon went on the Stock Exchange. The new National Nine Network was the first coast-to-coast network, with access to 59% of the Australian television audience. In July 1990 Bond Media went bankrupt, so Kerry Packer bought back the expaned network for only $250,000,000, around 5 times less then what he sold it for.
In November 1995 Rupert Murdock's company, News Limited, took a stake of Nine while Kerry Packer sold News Limited his 17 percent share in Fairfax.
In 1994, the Nine Network merged with publisher ACP to form Publishing & Broadcasting Ltd (PBL). In 1996, Kerry Packer's son James became managing director of the company.
On the 1 October 1997, TCN9 broadcast the first trial over-the-air broadcast of digital television in the Southern Hemisphere.
In 1998, PBL gained a 25% stake in Foxtel, which brought a lot of Nine Network material to the pay-tv service.
On 1 January 2001 Nine began digital broadcasts from all it's stations.