Triple M Sydney’s star host Lawrence Mooney has vanished from the airwaves of the station’s Moonman in the Morning breakfast show after falling out with his co-host Jess Eva as pressure mounts over low ratings, insiders say.
Well-placed sources told Daily Mail Australia the comedian is set to lose his $2million contract ‘imminently’ – a week after he was mysteriously pulled from the air.
Mooney, 56, has apparently caused issues at the station in recent months, after clashing with several staff members, most notably his co-host Jess.
Triple M Sydney is set to axe Lawrence Mooney from its breakfast show, following a falling out with her Moonman In The Morning co-host Jess Eva, pictured left, and recent pitiful ratings, insiders reveal
Eva, who joined Moonman in the Morning three years ago, has not publicly commented on why her co-host hasn’t been on air for a week or industry talk the pair have fallen out.
Network executives are also struggling to justify Mooney’s rumoured $2million paycheck given the program’s meagre ratings.
He was hired to host the show in January 2019 on a $750,000 salary, which was boosted to between $1.5million and $2million for 2020 and 2021, sources say.
His contract expires in 2022.
Since its launch, Moonman in the Morning has struggled to contend with other FM breakfast shows, earning just 4.6% market share in the latest radio ratings.
Eva, who joined Moonman in the Morning three years ago, has not publicly commented on why her co-host hasn’t been on air for a week or industry talk the pair have fallen out. Lawrence and Jess are pictured on the red carpet at the Australian Commercial Radio Award in 2019 with fellow co-host Chris Page
The show was quick to find an audience when it debuted in 2019, eventually peaking at a 6.9% market share after taking over Triple M’s Grill Team, which ended its nine-year run after recording a 5.4% share at the end of 2018.
Moonman in the Morning never reached the heights of Triple M’s Grill Team, which routinely pulled in shares over 7% in its heyday.
‘Grill Team’ was hosted by Matthew Johns, who quit the station in November 2018 to concentrate on his television career.
In contrast, KIIS FM market leader Kyle And Jackie O Show soared in the latest ratings with 10.7%.
Mooney officially has one year left on his contract with the network.
It comes after listeners were left puzzled over Mooney’s absence from his regular 104.9 Triple M Sydney slot over the past week.
Since its launch in January 2019, Moonman In The Morning has struggled to contend with other FM breakfast shows, earning just 4.6% marketshare in the latest radio ratings. Pictured: Moonman In The Morning co-hosts Chris Page, Lawrence Mooney, Jess Eva
It comes after listeners were left puzzled over Mooney’s absence from his regular 104.9 Triple M Sydney slot over the past week
The radio station has provided no information as to why he hasn’t been on the air, with a Southern Cross Austereo spokesperson simply telling Daily Mail Australia on Wednesday: ‘Lawrence Mooney is currently off air.’
Last week, it was announced that former rugby league star Mark Geyer would be joining the breakfast team in 2022.
Mooney has co-hosted Moonman in the Morning since 2019 alongside Chris Page and Jess Eva.
That same year, he won an Australian Commercial Radio Award (ACRA) for Best Entertainment Presenter.
Mooney was caught flouting Covid restrictions in June after travelling from Sydney to Byron Bay for a holiday.
Mooney was caught flouting Covid restrictions in June after travelling from Sydney to Byron Bay for a holiday
He lives in the Southern Highlands and works in Sydney’s CBD, and did not self-isolate for 14 days after arriving in Byron.
Mooney, who was fined $1,000 for his breach, made a public apology on air, saying: ‘I’d like to apologise to the Triple M family for acting like king c’**k of c**k Island.’
He said he took ‘full responsibility’ for his actions, before criticising himself for acting like ‘the rules didn’t apply to him’.