Later this year, the company which owns Shannonside/ Northern Sound is due to expand. Radio Kerry Holdings has approved an offer to the shareholders of Clare Community Radio Holdings Ltd which operates Clare FM to purchase the entire share capital of the company. Radio Kerry has also made an offer for a controlling interest in Tipp FM. It is understood that the board of Clare FM are recommending acceptance of the offer to their shareholders.
Liam O’Shea, the Managing Director of Clare FM & Tipp FM said: “The counties share the same pride of place, love of sports, music and culture. The reality of the modern media environment is that in order to secure their business future I strongly believe that radio stations must consider shared costs and consolidation with other similar companies.”
Both acquisition offers are subject to shareholder approval and regulatory approval, two factors which are expected to be decided upon in early 2019. Shannonside/Northern Sound, Radio Kerry, Clare FM, and Tipp FM have forged a close working relationship in the independent radio sector over the years and work together on industry bodies such as IBI, IRS, and Learning Waves.
Radio Kerry CEO, Paul Byrne, said: “The decision is being made to be proactively involved in the future development of the radio and media industry in Ireland and to create new opportunities for staff, advertisers, and listeners.”
Consolidation in the independent media sector has become the norm in recent years, with respect to both the radio and newspaper sector. There is no comment from Radio Kerry with respect to its plans for the expanded group. However, it would be fair to speculate that consolidation will lead to sharing costs among the group. In the past operations such as accounting, sales, human resources, and some management roles have been merged when consolidations of this nature occur, but there have been no specifics in this regard confirmed by Radio Kerry. The reality of modern business is such that consolidation, acts to secure the financial health of companies.
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