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Jack Cowin’s rising dough beats the reality show at Ten

That serene smile on the face of Jack Cowin at Ten Network’s shareholder meeting on Wednesday had nothing to do with his imminent exit from this broadcast debacle.
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Cowin added more than $100 million to his net worth during the AGM thanks to his 26.6 per cent stake in Domino’s Pizza, which had a cracker of a day, thanks to its expansion deal in Germany.

His Domino’s shares are now worth roughly $1.24 billion – meaning he can buy the Ten network twice over with plenty of cash to spare.

Cowin is one of the directors who will make way for Rupert Murdoch’s boys, as Foxtel – the new major shareholder – puts its stamp on the broadcaster.

It was also the last Ten AGM for Blackmores boss, Christine Holgate, who has not done badly from her hot stock either.

No, we don’t mean her Ten shares.

Alleged billionaire, Bruce Gordon, pledged his allegiance to Ten from the audience – which must have made everyone feel so much better given his track record to date.

Foxtel boss, Richard Freudenstein, was at the meeting, ready to take the baton from the departing board members. He becomes a Ten director as of Thursday.

The most interesting fact from Ten’s AGM was not that former executive chairman, Hamish McLennan, has not, technically, left the building.

He is on gardening leave until July next year.

But CBD was surprised to hear Ten chairman, David Gordon, claim that Ten can ask Hamish to help out any time they need it.

It makes sense I guess, the network is paying him $1.975 million while he serves out his notice period.

Your columnist is not sure if gardening leave is proving to be a bit of a challenge for Hamish, or, whether Gordon did not test this point by getting the former executive chairman of Ten to show up to the meeting on Wednesday.

There are other ways Hamish can help out. Ten has another series of I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! that needs a few big names to fill its roster, right? Clive’s new career

Clive Palmer might have needed a little Christmas cheer after a week that has left his corporate reputation in tatters, and 770 jobs at his Queensland nickel refinery in peril.

And we have just the tonic: Christmas carols by Clive Palmer.

Earlier this month, before the corporate heavens opened up on him, Clive ‘P Diddy’ Palmer obligingly collaborated with CBD artist Rocco Fazzari, for a very special version of Jingle Bells with a bit of political spice.

Despite battling a cold, the ever-professional member for Fairfax battles through the re-worked lyrics – which, we suspect, will not be making its way to iTunes any time soon.

The joy of Christmas definitely dissipated for Palmer last Monday evening in Perth after he lost a court case seeking payment of $US48 million ($66 million) in royalties from estranged Chinese partner, Citic.

The nickel refinery and its workforce is not the only venture imperilled by the legal setback.

New Caledonia, which is the source of the nickel that Palmer’s company refines, has also warned of “social and political disruption” in the Pacific nation if it is forced to close the mine.

His Coolum Resort is closed while his dinosaur park gets patched up, and the Queensland government has refused to deal on the nickel refinery, so Clive might have to do a bit more than put on a Santa outfit and sing a tune to get himself out of this scrape.

Let’s hope our certified National Treasure is up to it. Friendly fire

A nasty spat has been playing out between the n Shareholders Association and its former chief activist, Stephen Mayne.

It seems he has not been impressed with how the ASA has employed the services of John Cowling, hubby of ASA chairman, Diana D’Ambra.

ASA’s deputy chair, Barry Nunn, has now explained Cowling is filling the gaps left by the abrupt resignation of ASA boss, Joanne Parker.

“John’s engagement came as a result of the sudden resignation of the newly appointed ASA CEO in June,” he said.

“It was clear to the board that considerable effort would be required to maintain our association’s progress. The immediate engagement of an experienced professional with understanding of the ASA was seen as necessary.”

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