Group appoints Fennessy brothers as topper, chief

SYDNEY — FremantleMedia’s two Aussie production subsidiaries, Grundy Television and Crackerjack, will be amalgamated under the new banner of FremantleMedia Australia.

Group also said it has appointed brothers Mark Fennessy and Carl Fennessy as topper and chief operating officer, respectively, of the merged entity. Mark is a former topper of MTV Australia and a Nine Network exec, who formed Crackerjack 15 years ago; Carl was previously Crackerjack’s topper.

“The new business structure we have put in place means we have two exceptional executives at the helm of this diverse production business,” said Simon Spalding, Fremantle’s head of Asia Pacific.

Grundy launched in 1959 and has produced such shows as “Prisoner,” “Sons and Daughters” and boffo sudser “Neighbours.” Fremantle bought the company in 1995.

Crackerjack has produced hits such as Network Ten’s version of “The Biggest Loser,” which was a ratings success for the channel earlier this year.

Both production companies have previously operated as independent businesses while under the FremantleMedia umbrella.

The merger is set to be completed by January next year.

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