The service will launch on October 21 and a series of programs will also be produced by BBC World News called Australia Direct to air on the channel throughout the period of the G20 Summit.
The homepages for BBC.com and BBC News, that have been redesigned to include a new layout and video player, will be specially curated for an Australian audience, ensuring the most relevant content is prioritised across the site.
The enhanced coverage will focus on news that affects Australia on a global scale, while offering in-depth features and reports on selected local news stories. Tapping into the BBC’s extensive network of world correspondents, BBC.com will put national stories into an international context.
In addition to news, untold Australian stories on a range of topics will be commissioned for the BBC.com verticals: Future, Culture, Autos, Capital and Travel, as well as the newly launched BBC Earth.
Content from the Australian section will be accessible on BBC.com across desktop and mobile platforms, and via the BBC News app for iPhone and Android.
BBC News has appointed Wendy Frew as Australia editor, online. Frew is a former SMH journalist and chief of staff and her remit will be to drive the news agenda of the day and work with our global correspondents and growing team of freelancers on news features and analysis. She will be joined by another journalist who together will work with the BBC’s Sydney correspondent Jon Donnison, and regular contributors Phil Mercer and Katie Beck.
Chris Davies, director of sales and marketing, BBC Global News Limited said: “Australia is a priority market for us and with this local market investment together with our large network of international journalists, we are uniquely placed to offer readers stories they don’t normally hear from local media, giving them the full picture on news that affects them.”
Alistair McEwan, director of advertising sales and brand partnerships, BBC Worldwide ANZ said: “Australia has never been more connected to global issues than now. These site-wide enhancements in local product and Australian content further strengthen the connection with our audience and amplify the unique role of the BBC as Australians seek out unbiased, accurate and globally connected news and analysis – this makes BBC.com an ever more important choice for advertisers and brand partners.”
Australia Direct, the special season of programming on BBC World News will look at what’s driving Australia’s economy, its technological innovation, thriving tourism sector, sporting life and much more.
Vignettes from Australia Direct and related articles will also run on BBC.com, alongside partnered content, in a Showcase Australia hub, designed to profile key Australian growth sectors and leading Australian brands.
Sponsorship deals for Australia Direct have so far been secured with Brisbane Marketing and Trade & Investment Queensland.
Programs in Australia Direct include: The Travel Show uncovering what’s behind the enduring appeal of tourism in Australia; Click discovers where Australia is leading the world in technological innovation; Extra Time’s Rob Bonnet interviews some of Australia’s biggest sporting names including James Magnussen, Adam Goodes and Merv Hughes; Working Lives profiles people working in Sydney at different levels of the economic ladder and Talking Business with Linda Yueh will report live from the G20Summit.