The three largest commercial radio groups in the UK are working together to create three new production units to serve the industry. The new departments will be run by GCap Media, Global Radio and Emap in a bid to gear up for future networking opportunities.
GCap has already announced they will take over the running of hit40uk, with Pete Simmons, GCap Media’s programme director for content extending his role to manage shared programming projects for the Contemporary Hit Radio (CHR) network.
Global Radio’s network production unit, under Heart FM's programming director Mark Browning, will produce Adult Contemporary (AC) station programming, including the A-List, UK Music Week and The Brit Awards.
Emap will manage the production of Fresh 40 and the Rhythmic Network’s Chart Show. In collaboration with Global’s Galaxy Network it has a growing list of shared projects such as promotions for T-Mobile and Lynx. Fresh 40 will continue to be produced by independent production company, Somethin’ Else.
Commenting on the announcement, Andrew Harrison, CEO of RadioCentre said: "This gives commercial radio three official genre networks. Building on the success of UK Music Week where the genre networks worked incredibly well, this is a much more coherent, nationally focused structure for our industry. This structure provides access points for the Music and Media industry to be able to create some really exciting national promotions".
Rob Corlett, managing director of hit40uk Ltd said: "Against a backdrop of potentially more industry consolidation, Commercial Radio has serious ambitions to grow audiences. Placing show production within the key network’s lead broadcasters means they can be the foundation of more shared programming projects and the networking resource and expertise can develop".
The CHR network includes heritage stations in major cities such as Key 103, Trent FM, Capital, Metro and Forth 1. The AC network is made up mostly of Heart, Real and Century stations, whilst the Rhythmic Network includes Kiss and Galaxy.
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