Kyle Sandilands and Jackie ‘O’ Henderson have been the reigning king and queen of the FM airwaves for some time, but you might still be shocked to hear the staggering amount the radio duo are being paid.
The KIIS FM breakfast show hosts have reportedly extended their contracts with the ARN, Australian Radio Network, until the end of 2024, with both set to earn between $7-8 million per year - each, according to News.com.au.
That would see them make over $39,000 per radio show - which lasts 3.5 hours.
While he has not confirmed the amount, Kyle told the publication he wouldn’t discuss the “absurd amount of money” he is paid to do “something I love”.
“Don’t get me wrong, the money’s fantastic, but what really counts for me is the acknowledgment that what Jackie and I have created is one of the most successful shows on earth,” he said.
The Kyle and Jackie O Show is currently the number one FM breakfast show in Sydney with an 11.6 per cent audience share, still holding a 3.4 per cent buffer over their closest rivals Jonesy and Amanda on WSFM.
To offer some sort of comparison, Karl Stefanovic was rumoured to be on a deal with Channel Nine for $2m, with his former Today co-host Lisa Wilkinson famously leaving the network over a pay dispute as she wanted equal pay. She was then rumoured to be demanding $2m to remain at Channel Ten.
Over in Hollywood, heavyweights Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon by comparison will be earning $2.99m each to appear in their new show Morning Wars coming to Apple TV in November, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
It’s believed Kyle and Jackie O have pay parity when it comes to their base salaries. But both negotiated their contracts separately to include individual allowances linked to survey and revenue performance.
Kyle slammed over ‘vile’ comments
It might all come as a relief for Kyle, who recently copped serious backlash over comments he made regarding religious figure, the Virgin Mary.
The shock jock, who is no stranger to controversy, made lewd remarks about the ‘real way’ Mary conceived Jesus, while co-host Jackie O protested that religious communities had a right to believe what they wanted to.
The Virgin Mary is central to the Christian belief, as well as playing a part in Islamic scripture, and a video of the exchange was pulled from social media after it sparked protests both online and outside the KIIS FM studios.
Kyle apologised to the Daily Telegraph afterwards, saying: “I’m sorry if I offended anyone with my comments.”
“Everyone is entitled to their own religious beliefs and I’m fully supportive of that right.”
Kyle and Jackie O on air for nearly two decades
Kyle and Jackie O didn’t know each other when they first joined forces in 2000 on the Hot30, owned by Southern Cross Austereo.
They took over as hosts of the 2Day FM breakfast show in Sydney in 2005 and within 12 months had dethrone Nova’s Merrick and Rosso to become the most listened to FM breakfast show in Sydney.
They then completely stunned the radio industry in late 2013 when they jumped ship from 2Day FM to KIIS 106.5 after contract negotiations broke down.
Their loyal listeners have followed them across however and they are nominated for the big award Best On Air Team FM at this weekend’s Radio Awards in Brisbane, up against Nova’s Kate, Tim and Marty, WSFM’s Jonesy and Amanda, Fox FM’s Fifi, Fev and Byron, Nova’s Chrissie, Sam and Browny and Triple M’s Kennedy Molloy.
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