Media regulator, Ofcom has confirmed to BizAsia that it will be advertising the licence of Sunrise Radio (previously Buzz Asia) next month.
The station’s current licence expires in July 2015 and thus it will be ‘pre-advertised’ by Ofcom next Tuesday (1st July). The only way to avoid a licence being ‘pre-advertised’ by Ofcom is to apply for a licence renewal instead, whereby a licensee needs to provide DAB carriage of the service in order to qualify for the renewal. The deadline for a renewal for Sunrise Radio has now passed.
As per Ofcom’s published process, it will only move to a full licence contest if a party other than the existing licensee submits a ‘declaration of intent’, accompanied by a refundable cash deposit, to apply for the licence. If the ‘pre-advertisement’ stage proves unsuccessful, then Ofcom will re-advertise the licence in August.
Talking to BizAsia, Ofcom said that analogue radio licences are like ‘beauty parade’ contests awarded on the basis of statutory criteria, and not cash auctions.
Sunrise Radio (Sunrise Radio London Limited) moved to 963AM and 972AM in Greater London (previously Buzz Asia Limited) after its previous frequencies 1458AM and 1035AM were bought out from administrators by Lyca Media.