RAJAR: BBC A Network stays top; Sunrise Radio falls drastically

RAJAR -BBC Asian Network or Sunrise Radio
RAJAR -BBC Asian Network or Sunrise Radio

The BBC Asian Network has remained the UK’s most listened to Asian radio station, for the third consecutive quarter.

According to official data released by audience measuring body, RAJAR for Q3/12, the BBC Asian Network added 37,000 new listeners. The station’s weekly reach stood at 584,000 for period between 25th June 2012 – 16th September 2012. The station was also being listened to longer from 6.0 hours to 6.7 hours.

No doubt, the BBC Asian Network will be celebrating its latest listening figures after an uphill task to improve its output. Only this week, the station has made its biggest programming changes in years. How these will translate to listening figures, will be revealed in the next round of ratings.

Overview of BBC Asian Network National
This time last year: 547,000
As it stands now: 584,000
Difference: + 37,000

Sunrise Radio National lost a massive 138,000 listeners during this quarter – mainly down to the fact that the station ceased broadcasting in the West Midlands on DAB digital. This will be a huge knock for Sunrise Radio on a national level, which in the past has proved to be stiff competition for the BBC Asian Network. The station now comes a distance second to the BBC rival.

Sunrise Radio National could only muster in 403,000 during Q3 of 2012. During the same period last year, the station was hovering around with an audience of 453,000. So while the station is still being listened to longer (7.3 hours) – fewer people are tuning in.

Overview of Sunrise Radio National
This time last year: 453,000
As it stands now: 403,000
Difference: – 50,000


On the national front, Sunrise Radio has had disastrous results. On a local front, the station has remained steady. It lost 6,000 listeners. Last quarter, Sunrise Radio Greater London was listened to by 367,000 – in the latest figures, Sunrise Radio is being listened to by 361,000 Londoners. It however, is being listened to longer with 9.0 hours. Year-on-year, the station has added 1,000 new listeners.

Overview of Sunrise Radio London
This time last year: 360,000
As it stands now: 361,000
Difference: + 1,000

Kismat Radio is another station that has lost in the latest set of listening data. The Sunrise Radio Group adult contemporary station lost 11,000 listeners in the sampled quarter. Its weekly reach stands at 81,000 – down from 92,000 – in the previous quarter. Compared with data from last year, the station has lost 52,000 listeners.

The station has since changed its programming with a focus on regional languages in various dayparts. How these reflect in the ratings, will be published next time around.

Overview of Kismat Radio
This time last year: 133,000
As it stands now: 81,000
Difference: – 52,000

There was more trouble for the Sunrise Radio Group after its youth Asian station, Buzz Asia also reported an audience loss. In the past three months, Buzz Asia has lost 29,000 listeners. The station’s weekly reach stands at 88,000 – one of the lowest figures in the station’s history. Compared with data on a year-on-year basis, Buzz Asia has lost 13,000 listeners. The station has been struggling in the ratings ever since it was rebranded from Club Asia. During Club Asia’s successful days, the station was hovering over a weekly reach of 200,000.

Overview of Buzz Asia
This time last year: 101,000
As it stands now: 88,000
Difference: – 13,000

Other UK based Asian radio stations such as Radio XL in Birmingham, Sabras Radio in Leicester, Asian Sound in Manchester and other digital and community Asian radio stations do not subscribe to RAJAR.

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