4Digital to launch on Digital One?
E4 Radio, the first digital radio station to be offered by the 4Digital Group, is set to launch next April on the existing national multiplex Digital One.
4Digital had originally planned to roll out both E4 Radio and Channel 4 Radio before the end of this year, on their own national multiplex.
The story in Media Week quotes from a source close to the companies involved, saying that multiplex operators Digital One and 4Digital Group were close to a deal, but that it depended on approval from Arqiva.
While 4Digital plans to launch three radio stations of its own – E4 Radio, Channel 4 Radio and Pure 4 – several other services were also due to launch on the second national multiplex, the licence for which was won by the group last summer.
Media Week's source is quoted as saying: "4Digital has done a good deal by using its position as licensee of the second multiplex to negotiate with Digital One.
"Equally, Digital One would never survive against 4Digital Group, so they had to do a deal, and this is the best deal they could have done."
Should 4Digital launch the majority of its stations on the Digital One multiplex, the future of their own multiplex would be uncertain. The group won the right to operate the licence over National Grid Wireless, which proposed a 12-station lineup.