Two Asian stations bid for new Manc FM licence

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Two Asian radio stations are competing for the new Manchester FM Independent Radio Licence but face stiff opposition from nine other mainstream broadcasters.

In total, media regulator Ofcom received eleven applications from interested parties. The new FM license will make it Manchester’s fourth FM radio station.

The two Asian radio stations fighting for the frequency are 106.1 Manchester Sound and Masti Radio Ltd. Both are owned by companies already broadcasting in or around the same region.

106.1 Manchester Sound is owned by Asian Sound Radio, which currently broadcasts in Manchester on the AM band. With the new station, the owners are shifting its target audience focus to a younger Asian community-aged predominantly 15-34 with a distinctive mix of ethnic music.

Rival Masti Radio Ltd is also trying to tap into the same market. Its format to Ofcom read; “A contemporary Asian/Urban/Popular Music led service primarily targeting young people of Asian ethnic origin up to the age of 35. The station will also carry supplementary output of particular interest to people in other ethnic groups in the Manchester area.”

Masti Radio Ltd is currently available on DAB digital radio and online. Masti Radio Ltd is owned by Sunrise Radio (Yorkshire). Sunrise Radio broadcasts to Yorkshire from its Bradford studios. It already broadcasts on FM on 103.2.

The nine other radio stations that have sent in their applications to Ofcom are 106.1 The Arrow (Chrysalis), GMBC (Chrysalis), Jack FM, Manchester Citylife, MNR FM, Original 106 FM, Piccadilly Talk, Rock Talk Manchester and UK1 FM Manchester.

Ofcom welcomes the views of the public about the local needs of listeners in this area and the type of service required. Opinions on these issues can either be emailed to commercialradio@ofcom.org.uk or posted to Neil Stock, Head of Radio Planning & Licensing, Ofcom, Riverside House, 2a Southwark Bridge Road, London SE1 9HA. Mark the envelope ��Manchester licence�۪.

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