UKRD Acquires Blackburn Station - 107 The Bee

UKRD Acquires Blackburn Station - 107 The Bee

11:02am 18th January 2011

Radio operator, UKRD Group, has agreed to take a majority stake in East Lancashire local commercial station, 107 The Bee, which covers the town of Blackburn and its surrounding area. The station, which broadcasts to a TSA of 184,000 adults, was recently co-located with another UKRD owned station, 2BR, on the outskirts of Accrington which both stations overlap. Together with the shares held through its subsidiary, The Local Radio Company, UKRD will control 100% of The Bee’s shares.

UKRD Chief Executive, William Rogers, confirmed the acquisition this week in an announcement to staff at both stations. The groups’ initial offer for the company had been accepted by a clear majority of The Bee shareholders and subject to matters of formality, the station has, effectively, now changed hands.

“The Bee has faced many challenges in the last five years and this deal allows us to make the kind of changes necessary to deliver profitability and a secure future for the station,” said Rogers. “Whilst there will be changes made to reflect the new environment and benefits that the ownership of both these stations by one owner can bring, we are committed to delivering independent local radio services and product to each of the local areas served by The Bee and 2BR and that will not change.”

“We are passionately committed to the delivery of local radio in its finest traditional sense and we will now take the opportunity that this change of ownership gives us, to maximise that philosophy in Blackburn,” he said.

Both stations will be managed by MD, Simon Brierley, who was responsible for overseeing the co-location of the two in August last year. “Bringing these two stations together was quite a challenge but we delivered it on budget and on time,” he said. “What this change will now allow us to do is to develop independent strands of programming focussed upon each of the local patches whilst at the same time maximising the commercial opportunities which common ownership affords.”

This latest acquisition brings the number of stations in UKRD’s portfolio to 16.


18th January 2011

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