Boom and Gloom for Britain's Radio Sector

28 September 2001

Two of the nation’s largest radio groups reported in markedly different mood on Thursday.

Capital Radio Group, the nation’s largest commercial radio operator, announced both good news and bad. The latter being that full year revenues would be down by 6% – due as much to loss of audience share to rivals by its London flagship station than the slowdown in adspend.

The good news was that underlying profits for the full year would be in the region of £30 million, well in advance of market expectations. The news caused Capital’s shares to leap by nearly 10% in early trade to £5.50.

GWR Group, number two in the UK radio league and owner of national station Classic FM, was in less upbeat mode with its forecast of a 3.5% fall in H1 revenues for the six months to September, acquisitions excluded. With the inclusion of acquisitions the figure rose to a plus of 6.5%.

GWR predicted an overall 8% plunge in full year revenues, despite the fact that these had improved to “flat” in Q2 compared with Q1’s minus 15%. The announcement triggered a 9% fall in the group’s share price to £1.53.

News source: Financial Times