Two of the country's biggest radio stars are changing stations to a newly branded network to be named The Hits.
Polly Gillespie and Grant Kereama have filled the breakfast airwaves on ZM for around 20 years but are moving in a fortnight to launch The Radio Network's new The Hits brand, which is replacing Classic Hits.
Filling their morning role at ZM will be Carl "Fletch" Fletcher, Vaughan Smith and Megan Sellers, the former drivetime show hosts poached last year from ZM's leading competitor The Edge. That will pit the young guns against former colleagues JJ, Mike and Dom for younger audiences.
Gillespie and Kereama's move means The Hits will network their breakfast show in 20 centres, replacing local breakfast shows. However TRN has decided its 9am to 3pm slots across the country, which were previously centrally run, will be local programmes to increase connections with those markets.
The company says the creation of The Hits, with the star breakfast duo, will also inject international entertainment star quality in a special feature named The Scoop involving Gillespie interviewing stars.
Gillespie will also regularly appear on a ZM afternoon spot and on Newstalk ZB on Saturday mornings with Jack Tame.
"This is a major day for radio," said Jane Hastings, chief executive of TRN.
The new ZM breakfast team "have an off-the-wall sense of humour which is irreverent, creative and highly relatable. It works seamlessly with social media channels and they love connecting with their fans this way," she said.
Meanwhile Mediaworks Radio says TRN's award-winning breakfast host in the Waikato, Mark Bunting, will transfer to its The Breeze station.
Polly Gillespie and Grant Kereama will host TRN's new station, The Hits.