Now is the right time to for Chrysalis to carry out a review of its options for the radio division, the company announced today. Whilst Heart founder and largest shareholder Chris Wright is against a sale, the review could lead to a dmerger for the company.
Given the valuable market positions that Chrysalis Radio has built and the improved trading performance in recent months, the Board believes that now is an
appropriate time to undertake such a review. The review will be wide-ranging and
will assess all options which can deliver maximum value to Chrysalis shareholders, including a potential demerger of the radio and music businesses.
Hawkpoint Partners Limited has been appointed to assist with this review, a
further announcement on which will be made in due course.
Investec Securities has valued Chrysalis's radio business at around 220million pounds. It has been speculated that Emap would be interested in the company, whilst GMG Radio have already said publicly they want to take the company to the third biggest in the UK – buying the Heart and Galaxy brand along with LBC would certainly achieve that.
Commenting on the review Richard Huntingford, Chief Executive said:
"The valuable market positions we have created at Chrysalis Radio, coupled with
the ongoing consolidation in UK radio, suggest that now is an appropriate time
to consider a formal review of our strategic options in this area.
The latest Rajars and current trading confirm that we start this process from a
position of considerable strength. We have no pre-conceived view on the outcome
of the review, other than a commitment to ensure Chrysalis Radio's participation
in the long term development of the UK radio sector and thereby deliver the
greatest benefit to all stakeholders, including shareholders, listeners,
advertisers and employees."
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