Bauer Media is to acquire the UKRD Group, owner of ten regional radio stations across England, in the latest manifestation of an ongoing acquisition spree, which has this year seen it take control of Wireless Local, Celador Radio and Linc FM.
With a weekly reach of 722,000 listeners, UKRD Group represents a substantial addition to Bauer’s existing audience, bringing it closer to new regional markets across Yorkshire, East Anglia and the south of England.
Paul Keenan, chief executive of Bauer Media UK and European Radio, said: “This further demonstrates our long-term commitment and belief in commercial radio which has never been so exciting – for both listeners and advertisers. With record revenues for the third year running, the radio medium has grown by a third in the past five years alone, and with its highest share of listening since 2001, commercial radio is in a stronger position than ever before.”
William Rogers, chief executive officer at UKRD, added: "UKRD's radio stations will make a great addition to the Bauer portfolio and the opportunities that may well present themselves to many of our talented and highly professional people will be greatly enhanced by this acquisition. The inclusion in the deal of UKRD's interest in FRS ensures that the agency will continue to serve its clients."
As part of the deal, Bauer has also taken possession of three local digital audio broadcasting multiplexes.
Earlier this year Bauer named Richard Dawkins as its chief operating officer for European radio.