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An application to Ofcom for the FM
Independent Local Radio Licence

Ipswich

August 2005
General information
Description of applicant

(a)

Name of Applicant, Address, Telephone and Fax nos., E-mail address:
Nam...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

(i)

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the lice...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

(iii)

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the li...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

(v)

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the lice...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
1.

Ownership and control of company
which will operate the licence

...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

a) Overall Financial Strategy

Provi...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

a) Overall Financial Strategy

These...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

a) Overall Financial Strategy

In or...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

a) Overall Financial Strategy

The f...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

5.

a) Overall Financial Strategy

B...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

7.

a) Overall Financial Strategy

A...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

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(b)

a) Overall Financial S...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

c) Financial Projections

The purpos...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

c) Financial Projections

The presen...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

c) Financial Projections

A recent r...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

c) Financial Projections

Research c...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

c) Financial Projections

In July 20...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

c) Financial Projections

The applic...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

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c) Financial Projections

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Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
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Financial and business plan

d) Audience Projections

Provide the...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
2.

Financial and business plan

(iv)

d) Audience Projections

The b...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
3.

Transmission Proposals

(i)

Provide details of the transmission ...
Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service
3.

Transmission Proposals

(iii)
Describe proposed arrangements for ...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
4.

Programming Philosophy

(i)

This subs...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
4.

Programming Philosophy

Ipswich Local ...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
4.

Programming Philosophy

(ii) The strat...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
4.

Programming Philosophy

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Present...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
4.

Programming Philosophy

Weekday news b...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
4.

Programming Philosophy

Locally compil...
Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests
And Broadening Choice
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Programming Philosophy

Weekday Progra...
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard
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'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard

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Application to Ofcom for a local commercial FM radio broadcast licence for Ipswich by Ipswich 102 FM, written by Grant Goddard in August 2005 for Laser Broadcasting Limited.

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'An Application To Ofcom For The FM Independent Local Radio Licence For Ipswich By Ipswich 102 FM' by Grant Goddard

  1. 1. An application to Ofcom for the FM Independent Local Radio Licence Ipswich August 2005
  2. 2. General information Description of applicant (a) Name of Applicant, Address, Telephone and Fax nos., E-mail address: Name: Ipswich Local Radio Limited Address: 7 Bermuda Road Ransomes Europark Ipswich Suffolk IP3 9RU Telephone: (01473) 711700 Fax: (01473) 274980 E-Mail: peter@ipswichlocalradio.com Company Registration Number: 04797991 Certificate of Incorporation (Company No. 04797991) attached as Appendix 1. (b) Main Contact (For Public Purposes): Name: Telephone (day): (01473) 724472 E-Mail: james@ipswichlocalradio.com Address: (c) James Hazell 124 Rushmere Road Ipswich Suffolk IP4 4JX Proposed Station Name (if decided): Ipswich 102 (d) Brief Description of Programme Service: A genuinely local radio station for 35 to 64 year olds, focused on Ipswich and the surrounding area, with local news, interviews and information forming an essential part of the output. (e) Main Contact (For OFCOM Purposes): This is to be Appendix 2. found in Confidential Page 1
  3. 3. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. (i) Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Provide the name, occupation, other directorships, other media interests, background and relevant media experience of each director (executive and non-executive), including the proposed chairperson. Ipswich Local Radio is exactly what it says it is – a truly local company committed to establishing a genuinely local radio station for Ipswich, backed by local people who have deep roots in the town, and directly relevant media and business experience in Ipswich and the surrounding area. Since its very first meeting in November 2002, Ipswich Local Radio has actively lobbied for a new, local radio station for Ipswich. That singular aim has been furthered by the organisation of three very successful trial broadcasts in 2003, 2004 and 2005, each of which provided the Board with valuable feedback from listeners and advertisers about the appropriate form that Ipswich Local Radio should take. The opinions of listeners and advertisers to the three trial broadcasts, combined with the Board’s extensive series of face-to-face consultations with locally elected representatives and local community groups, have all provided significant input to the strategy and business plan for the proposed station, Ipswich 102. A comprehensive, three-year programme of market research has added significant market intelligence to these proposals. The Board of Ipswich Local Radio has been built through a natural process of evolution since 2002. Existing, longstanding relationships between experienced media and business people in the Ipswich market have been strengthened through their shared desire to develop a brand new, locally focused radio station for the town. The proposals for this new radio station derive wholly from within Ipswich itself, and have been strongly influenced by the Board’s intimate knowledge of the local market. The strength of the Board comes from its members’ shared experiences of managing and working in Ipswich businesses over several decades. During that time, the Directors have witnessed much change in Ipswich, and the relatively recent regeneration plans for the town ensure that even greater changes will be wrought in the future, positively reinforcing the town’s position as a regional centre for business, leisure and entertainment. To illustrate the natural cohesion of the Board, it is worth noting some examples of relationships between Directors that existed long before the advent of Ipswich Local Radio. Chairman Peter Barnes first met Nigel Reeve in 1970 when both were involved in Ipswich Hospital Radio. Station Director designate James Hazell first met Peter Barnes in 1991 when the former was presenting the breakfast show on Ipswich station Radio Orwell. Geoff Sheldrake first met Nigel Reeve in the early 1970s when the latter was selling advertising for an Ipswich-based local newspaper group and, subsequently, for Radio Orwell. In addition to the common experiences the Directors share of having worked for many years in the Ipswich business community, the Board also benefits from its Directors’ complementary radio industry experiences, all within the Ipswich market. Chairman Peter Barnes has been one of Ipswich’s top five radio advertisers for his family business since 1975. Nigel Reeve worked as Sales Executive at Radio Orwell for six years. James Hazell has worked in Ipswich since 1990 at Radio Orwell and other Suffolk stations as broadcaster and programme director. Both James and Nigel also bring to the Board considerable radio broadcasting experience gained outside of the Ipswich market. Page 2
  4. 4. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors The strength of the Board and its confidence in the proposals it has formulated for Ipswich 102 are the end result of several years’ hard work and dedication. The roots of Ipswich Local Radio go back to that very first meeting held in November 2002. The company was registered in June 2003, minuted meetings started in July 2003, a consortium of investors was formed in August 2003, and the Board was elected from amongst Consortium members in February 2004. Both the Board and the Consortium have held monthly meetings since then. The role of the Consortium is explained in more detail in the answer to Question 7 of this application. The Board of Directors represents 100% of the issued shares of Ipswich Local Radio Limited. They are: Peter Barnes (Executive Chairman) James Hazell (Station Director) Nigel Reeve (Non-Executive Director) Susan Hall (Non-Executive Director) Martina King (Non-Executive Director) Geoff Sheldrake (Non-Executive Director) Lina Hogg (Non-Executive Director) Barry Dye (Non-Executive Director) Page 3
  5. 5. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Peter Barnes (Part-Time Executive Chairman) Occupation: Local Businessman Other Directorships: Barnes of Ipswich Limited, Travel To You Limited Other Media Interests: None Background and relevant media experience: Peter is a well-known and respected Ipswich businessman who has run his family business for more than twenty years, growing it from a town centre family drapers into one of East Anglia’s leading bedding manufacturers and carpet retailers, based in state-of-the-art, out-oftown premises. Peter’s interest in commercial radio started when he first booked advertising on Radio Orwell in the 1970s, and he quickly became one of the station’s top five clients. His belief in the radio medium was so strong that, when he launched his new out-of-town business The Bed Factory in 1995, he allocated 90% of its advertising budget to the local radio station and never looked back. Initially spending £40,000 a year on local radio advertising, Peter has gradually reduced that amount because the Ipswich station has become more regional than local, and its target audience is now considerably younger. By 2000, he had switched most of his advertising to other, more cost effective media. Peter is aware of many other businesses in Ipswich that have been placed in the same position. He is committed to bringing a new, affordable, local advertising medium to the area that will enable local businesses once again to use radio to develop and grow their customer base, just as he has done over the last twenty years. Peter will take an active role within Ipswich 102, committing at least one day per week to the radio station, where he will use his personal experience and extensive business contacts to assist the local sales team. His twenty-year experience of booking local radio advertising campaigns provides the Board with considerable expertise in understanding precisely what local businesses want from local radio in Ipswich. Page 4
  6. 6. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors James Hazell (Station Director) Occupation: Broadcaster Other Directorships: 44.1 Creative Ltd Other Media Interests: James is Managing Director of 44.1 Creative, an Ipswich-based radio commercial production company that supplies commercials to radio stations across the UK and Europe Background and relevant media experience: James began his radio career in 1985 at Radio Broadland in Norwich, where he gained considerable broadcast experience, both on- and offair. He presented the station’s coverage of such challenging events as the 1987 hurricane, Hillsborough, the Bradford fire, elections, Budgets and many days of severe weather, as well as a very successful morning show and sports programme. Off-air, he acquired knowledge of radio station operations from working with news journalists, engineering staff and the sales team. In 1990, James moved to Ipswich to present the high-profile Orwell FM breakfast show. In 1993, he accepted the challenging position of Programme Controller at Mellow 1557 in nearby Tendring. James drew on his skills and experience to become the driving force behind Mellow’s switch from AM to FM and its successful re-launch as Dream 100 FM in Colchester. In 1998, he set up 44.1 Creative Ltd, a successful Sony Award nominated commercial production company that provides commercials to many stations in the UK, the Republic of Ireland and European countries such as Spain and Switzerland. Between 2000 and 2003, James further developed his skills in technology, working for BT Research in Martlesham Heath, Ipswich, where his responsibilities included advanced computing and programming. He subsequently became a partner in the IT company Ipswich Computers. In 2003, he returned to his first love of radio, with a view to establishing a new local station for Ipswich. He joined Ipswich Local Radio Ltd and has dedicated many hours to that cause, managing the Ipswich Local Radio Restricted Service Licence trial broadcasts, as well as the group’s publicity, awareness campaigns and promotional activities. James will utilise his radio knowledge and technological skills as Station Director of Ipswich 102. His was the last voice to be heard on Radio Orwell before it was re-launched as SGR FM. His ambition is to be the first voice broadcast on Ipswich 102. Page 5
  7. 7. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Nigel Reeve (Non-Executive Director) Occupation: Company Director Other Directorships: Laser Broadcasting Limited, Banbury Local Radio Limited, Chorley Local Radio Limited, Exeter Local Radio Limited, Fresh Broadcasting Limited, Hereford Local Radio Limited, Harmony Radio Ltd, Humberside Local Radio Limited, Ipswich Local Radio Limited, Oxford Local Radio Limited, Shrewsbury Local Radio Limited, Torbay Local Radio Limited, Warwick Local Radio Limited Other Media Interests: Chief Executive & shareholder in Laser Broadcasting Limited Background and relevant media experience: Nigel was born in Ipswich, the son of a local publican. He brings more than 35 years of media experience to the Board, much of it based in his hometown. He began his career with the local newspaper in Ipswich in 1969, transferring to the fledgling Radio Orwell in 1975. After six years, Nigel joined 2CR in Bournemouth as Sales Manager. In 1983, he became Sales Director at County Sound, before moving to Invicta Sound in 1985. Later, as Managing Director of Invicta, he helped deliver a £1m profit and subsequent stock market flotation. During the same period, Nigel was Chairman of the Commercial Radio Advertising Awards, where he championed improvements in the standard of radio commercials. In 1991, Nigel joined the launch team of Classic FM, the UK’s first national commercial radio station, with responsibility for all sales and marketing at the station. After a very successful five years, Nigel was approached by London News Radio and became Chief Executive there in 1996, transforming a loss-making station into a profitable business by 1999. At the end of 1999, Nigel established Fusion Radio Holdings, purchasing two radio stations in London and a third in Oxford. In September 2001, Nigel merged Fusion with Milestone Radio Limited, giving the new company controlling interests in additional stations in Newbury, Rugby and Basingstoke. Nigel formed Laser Broadcasting Limited in 2002, a company currently involved in supporting radio licence applications by fourteen local groups across the UK. Nigel is an experienced media sales trainer, having set up the UK’s first radio sales training company in 1986. He brings this expertise, and over 30 years of radio-based knowledge, to the Board of Ipswich Local Radio. Page 6
  8. 8. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Nigel maintains strong family ties with Ipswich and, as a longstanding fan of Ipswich Town Football Club, attends many of the team’s home games. Nigel represents Laser Broadcasting’s 40.00% holding in Ipswich Local Radio. He and the rest of the Laser Broadcasting team are committed to spending a minimum of one day a week working with the staff of Ipswich Local Radio. Page 7
  9. 9. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Susan Hall (Non-Executive Director) Occupation: Financial Director Other Directorships: Laser Broadcasting Limited, Banbury Local Radio Limited, Chorley Local Radio Limited, Exeter Local Radio Limited, Fresh Radio Ltd, Harmony Radio Ltd, Hereford Local Radio Limited, Humberside Local Radio Limited, Ipswich Local Radio Limited, Oxford Local Radio Limited, Shrewsbury Local Radio Limited, Torbay Local Radio Limited, Warwick Local Radio Limited Other Media Interests: Susan is the Finance Director of Laser Broadcasting Limited Background and relevant media experience: Susan is a Financial Director, bringing over twenty years of media and marketing accountancy, planning and reporting skills to the Board of Ipswich Local Radio. She started her career at Bourne Publicity Limited, where she worked for sixteen years, progressing to the role of Finance Manager. She left Bourne Publicity after being approached by an Americanowned multinational IT Company, and joined its team with responsibility for reporting financial statements for the UK operation into the US head office. Susan’s direct radio experience started in 2001 when she joined Fusion Radio Holdings Limited as Group Financial Controller. She worked on the flotation of the company on the AIM market in June 2003. In January 2004, Susan joined Laser Broadcasting Limited as Finance Director, with a brief to oversee all aspects of company business. Subsequently, Susan has worked on the financial aspects and has managed accounts for the fourteen applicant groups Laser is working with. Susan has been involved in financial planning for this application, and will continue, as part of the Laser team, to support Ipswich Local Radio throughout all stages of its development. Page 8
  10. 10. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Martina King (Non-Executive Director) Occupation: Company Director Other Directorships: Capita plc, Johnston Press plc, IMD plc Other Media Interests: None Background and relevant media experience: Martina's career has spanned 25 years in the media industry, the first ten of which were in sales and management at The Guardian newspaper. In 1993, she joined Capital Radio as Client Sales Director, before being promoted to Sales Director and then Managing Director of both Capital 95.8 FM and Capital Gold. In 1999, Martina joined Yahoo! as its first UK Managing Director, and went on to run its European business division. In 2004, she left Yahoo! to become a main board director of a number of leading UK plc companies. Additionally, she is a member of the Presidents Committee, London First and a Council Member of the Marketing Group GB. Martina brings a wealth of radio, media and marketing experience to the Board. As well as representing husband Simon King’s shareholding (3.92%), she will work with the Board advising on all aspects of station marketing post-award through to launch. Page 9
  11. 11. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Geoff Sheldrake (Non-Executive Director) Occupation: Company Director Other Directorships: R.S. Brown Autosales Limited, A.B.S. Leisure Limited Other Media Interests: None Background and relevant media experience: Geoff is one of Ipswich’s leading local businessmen. His early career was spent in the retail motor industry where, as a dealership principal, he worked with Jaguar, Volkswagen Audi and Land Rover Range Rover. In 1989, he identified a gap in the local entertainment market and formed A.B.S. Leisure Limited, a company specialising in family entertainment. Since then, it has grown into one of Ipswich’s leading companies, employing eighty people in businesses such as ten-pin bowling, indoor adventure play facilities and after-school clubs. In addition to his business background, Geoff is deeply involved with the local community in Ipswich, and is particularly active in sport and fundraising events. His local knowledge and community links will be an invaluable asset to the Board of Ipswich Local Radio Limited, along with his track record launching and developing successful, new local businesses. Geoff represents the Consortium of 12 investors in Ipswich Local Radio Limited, whose combined holdings represent 36.65% of the company’s issued share capital. Page 10
  12. 12. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Lina Hogg (Non-Executive Director) Occupation: Human Resource Management Other Directorships: Picasso H.R. Limited Other Media Interests: None Background and relevant media experience: Before entering human resource management, Lina was successfully employed in the training and computer industries. Subsequently, Lina worked as human resources manager in retail and for a major firm of solicitors, giving her up-to-date knowledge of employment legislation and human resources practice. She has experience of initiating personnel policies and procedures, as well as dealing with employee issues that require a sound understanding of employment law. Since October 2000, Lina has been founder and managing director of Picasso H.R. Limited, a human resources management consultancy and out-sourcing organisation. The company now provides employment law support/advice, health and safety consultations, and personal development training to a diverse range of organisations. Lina is a Chartered Member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel Development (MCIPD) and has a B.Sc. (Hons) Degree in Chemistry. She holds the posts of Vice President of the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of Suffolk Business Women, and Business Advisor to Suffolk Young Enterprise. Lina will advise the Board on all aspects of Ipswich 102’s human resources policies. In addition to her own shareholding, she also represents the holding of Suffolk Chamber of Commerce (of which she is Vice President), the only Chamber in the UK to have financially backed a commercial local radio licence application. Page 11
  13. 13. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence a) Board of Directors Barry Dye (Non-Executive Director) Occupation: Company Owner/Sole Proprietor Other Directorships: None Other Media Interests: None Background and relevant media experience: Barry set up his own Ipswich-based entertainment agency in 1972, using contacts made through working for Decca Records and the BBC. In the early years, he helped build the careers of many famous entertainment names such as Jim Davidson and Paul Daniels. The agency expanded in 1975 to include the management of a number of acts. In 1983, a young bluecoat named Shane Roche was spotted working at a Pontins holiday camp. Barry took over his management and changed his name to Shane Richie, overseeing his career until the mid-nineties, during which time he negotiated all his television contracts and the lead role in the musical Grease at the Dominion in London’s West End. In 1990, Barry moved into concert promotions, putting on a sell-out Tina Turner concert at Ipswich Town Football Club, and followed it with a performance by Status Quo at Norwich City’s football ground. Barry’s business has continued to expand and now includes event organisation and equipment hire. Barry brings 33 years experience in the professional entertainment business and his intimate knowledge of Ipswich to the Board. He will use this experience to help the Board develop and promote local talent on Ipswich 102. (ii) If there are firm plans to appoint any further directors, provide information (with details of any specific individuals in mind). This information may be submitted in confidence. There are no plans to appoint further directors post-award. Page 12
  14. 14. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence b) Proposed Investors and Shareholding Structure Full details of the shareholding structure should be provided, including: (i) Names and addresses (the latter may be submitted in confidence) of all existing or proposed shareholders. Names and addresses of shareholders are listed below: Shareholder Barnes of Ipswich Limited (Peter Barnes) 7 Bermuda Road, Ransomes Europark, Ipswich IP3 9RU Richard Brown 2 Oak Grove, Sproughton, Ipswich IP8 3EN Craig Bickers 50 Plummers Dell, Great Blakenham, Ipswich IP6 0HW Norman Bickers 50 Plummers Dell, Great Blakenham, Ipswich IP6 0HW David Boswell Woodside, Martlesham Road, Woodbridge IP13 6LX Rob Brow 45 Holly Road, Kesgrave, Ipswich IP5 1HX Paul Cawthorn Kings Arms Cottages, 19 Woodbridge Road, Tunstall IP12 2JE Colin Hill 15 Birch Avenue, Great Bentley, Colchester CO7 8LL Phil Ironfield Oaken House, 609 Foxhall Road, Ipswich IP3 8ND Norman Lloyd Sherborne Avenue, Ipswich IP4 3DR Edward Race 2 Western Avenue, Felixstowe, Ipswich IP11 9SB Geoff Sheldrake 4 Sawmill Lane, Nacton, Ipswich IP10 0HS Simon Wade 111 Oakstead Close, Ipswich IP4 5HW Suffolk Chamber of Commerce Felow Maltings, 42 Claw Street, Ipswich IP2 8SQ Barry Dye 11 Macaulay Road, Ipswich IP1 6NG James Hazell 124 Rushmere Road, Ipswich IP4 4JX Lina Hogg Garnhams House, Cretingham, Woodbridge IP13 7DW Simon King 42 Mays Hill Road, Bromley, Kent BR2 0HT Laser Broadcasting Limited (ii) Address Crowther Road, Washington, Tyne & Wear NE38 0BW Total number, class/classes of shares and issue price of shares (specify voting, non-voting, preference, other etc). A total of 211,854 ordinary voting shares will be issued. Page 13
  15. 15. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. (iii) Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence b) Proposed Investors and Shareholding Structure All voting shareholders and holders of 5% or more non-voting shares and loan stock should be named. State the number, class/classes and price of shares to be issued to each investor. Name Total Shares Issue Price Investment % Barnes of Ipswich Limited (Peter Barnes) 20,026 £3.17 £63,482 9.45 Laser Broadcasting Limited 84,750 £2.80 Geoff Sheldrake 6,951 £3.17 £22,035 3.28 Craig Bickers 5,513 £3.17 £17,476 2.60 Norman Bickers 5,513 £3.17 £17,476 2.60 David Boswell 11,054 £3.17 £35,041 5.22 Rob Brow 11,053 £3.17 £35,038 5.22 Richard Brown 6,953 £3.17 £22,041 3.28 Paul Cawthorn 644 £3.17 £2,041 0.30 Colin Hill 2,083 £3.17 £6,603 0.98 Phil Ironfield 8,277 £3.17 £26,238 3.91 Norman Lloyd 1,886 £3.17 £5,979 0.89 10,415 £3.17 £33,016 4.92 Simon Wade 7,307 £3.17 £23,163 3.45 Total Consortium 77,649 Ted Race £237,300 40.00 36.65 Suffolk Chamber of Commerce 4,166 £3.17 £13,206 1.97 Barry Dye 2,083 £3.17 £6,603 0.98 Lina Hogg 4,419 £3.17 £14,008 2.09 10,453 £3.17 £33,136 4.93 8,308 £3.17 £26,336 3.92 James Hazell Simon King 211,854 £640,218 100.00 As a Board member, Geoff Sheldrake represents not only his own interest in Ipswich Local Radio Limited, but also the interests of the eleven shareholders indented beneath his name. This combined Consortium holds 36.65% of issued shares. The use of a Consortium nominee on the Board is a constructive answer to the Board’s desire to balance breadth of ownership with the need to maintain a compact Board that has the ability to make important business decisions at the speed that will be required to ensure maximum adherence to the business plan. The Consortium has been in place since February 2003 and has adopted an agreed set of formal rules governing its procedures and the role of its elected representative on the Board. A copy of the agreement signed by the Consortium members is available on request. (iv) Outline any shareholders agreements or arrangements which exist. A shareholder agreement is in place, ensuring any shares that become available must be offered to all other shareholders. A copy of the document is available on request. Page 14
  16. 16. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. (v) Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence b) Proposed Investors and Shareholding Structure Where a corporate body other than a current Ofcom licensee will be providing 30% or more of the required funding, details should be given of its directors and main shareholders, and of its activities. Laser Broadcasting Limited is the only corporate shareholder with a holding of more than 30%. Laser Broadcasting Limited was established in 2002 to bid for local FM radio station licences and acquire minority holdings in existing commercial radio stations. Ofcom is aware of Laser Broadcasting and its activities, and Ipswich Local Radio would be pleased to provide more information upon request. Its major shareholders are: List of Laser Broadcasting Limited Directors and Main Shareholders Full Name No of shares Director Shareholder Capital North East No 1 3 Earls Court Ltd Partnership 5th Avenue Business Park Team Valley Gateshead, NE11 0HF 210,179 YES YES Hugh Morgan Williams Cowesby Grange Cowesby Thirsk North Yorkshire YO7 2JL 11,000 YES YES Nigel Reeve Swidney Lodge Melmerby Leyburn Yorkshire, DL8 4TW 102,000 YES YES Charles May Wise Speke Commercial Union House Pilgrim Street Newcastle Upon Tyne NE1 6RQ 59,240 YES YES Keith Rawlings Summerhayes Cliff Road Hythe Kent CT21 5XQ 35,000 YES YES Susan Hall 2 Lees Farm Barn Pyrford Road Pyrford, Woking Surrey GU22 8UE 8,550 YES YES Anthony Vickers (vi) Address 20 Lawn Crescent Kew Richmond Surrey TW9 3NR 4,500 YES YES Ofcom may request additional information (e.g. a banker’s letter, statutory/management accounts) regarding the shareholders, or any other providers of finance, listed in the application. Ipswich Local Radio would be pleased to provide any additional information that is required. Page 15
  17. 17. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 1. Ownership and control of company which will operate the licence c) Involvement of the Applicant in Specified Activities Details are required of the involvement by the applicant and its participants (including shareholders or other subscribers of more than 5% of the applicants total funding requirements) in any of the activities listed below, and the extent of the interest. For these purposes, the applicant includes associates of the applicant (i.e. directors and their associates and other group companies). (a) Advertising agencies: None (b) Newspapers: None (c) Other broadcasting interests: Laser Broadcasting Ltd was established in 2002 to bid for local FM Radio Station licences and acquire minority holdings in existing commercial radio stations. It is involved with 14 applicant groups around the UK. Laser Broadcasting Limited is a 25% shareholder in Fresh Broadcasting Limited, Ofcom radio licensee for the Yorkshire Dales. (d) Bodies whose objects are wholly or mainly of a religious nature: None (e) Bodies whose objects are wholly or mainly of a political nature: None (f) Local authorities: None (g) Other publicly-funded bodies: None *Applicants should note that this information is required for the purposes of checking compliance with the ownership rules, and is not relevant to an applicant’s ability to maintain its proposed service. If none of the categories above apply to the application this should be clearly stated. Page 16
  18. 18. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan a) Overall Financial Strategy Provide a concise summary of how the applicant considers it is able to establish and maintain, throughout the licence period, its proposed service, and how this licence fits in with the investors’ strategy. 1. The Broadcast Area and Population Firstly, Ipswich Local Radio analysed the potential size of the broadcast area to ensure that its population and its sub-demographics would be sufficient to support a new local radio station. More detailed information on the results of this local market analysis can be found in the answer to Question 2(c). The proposed broadcast area (see answer to Question 3) will reach a population of 295,869 adults. The area centres on Ipswich, but also extends from Woodbridge in the northeast to Hadleigh in the southwest, and from Harwich in the southeast, finishing just short of Stowmarket in the northwest. To be prudent, the Board has decided to base its financial calculations on a reduced population of 250,000 adults, as experience shows that some of the outlying population is more closely associated with Colchester and Bury St. Edmunds rather than Ipswich. Of the remaining population, nearly 40% live in the borough of Ipswich, while the remainder live within 20 minutes drive from Ipswich town centre. Research commissioned by Ipswich Local Radio (see Research Projects #1, 2, 4 and 8) demonstrates the demand from listeners for a new local radio station serving this population with its proximity to the centre of the broadcast area. Additional research (see Research Projects #3 and 7) demonstrates that Ipswich 102, the radio station proposed by the Board, will prove an attractive proposition to local advertisers over the twelve-year period of the licence. 2. Vision for a Radio Station In October 1975, Ipswich was given its own commercial radio station, Radio Orwell, which broadcasted programming with appeal to a wide cross-section of the available audience and that covered all age ranges. By the early 1990s, the station was renamed SGR FM and had extended its coverage across the county of Suffolk. By the late 1990s, its target audience had become more focused on younger people. 42% of hours listened to SGR FM currently derive from listeners aged 15 to 35 (see Research Project #5). When SGR FM was purchased by one of the UK’s leading radio groups, it started to attract substantial revenue from the national radio advertisers. As a result, local advertisers found they could no longer afford to use the medium (see Research Projects #3 and 7). Three Directors on the Board of Ipswich Local Radio have first-hand experience of these changes to Ipswich’s local radio station. Peter Barnes was, until recently, one of the leading radio advertisers in Ipswich. As an Ipswich-based broadcaster, James Hazell has witnessed first-hand the programme changes that have occurred over the last fifteen years in the market, after being the last voice heard on the old Radio Orwell. Nigel Reeve lived and worked in Ipswich, bringing some of the early radio advertisers to Radio Orwell, and is acutely aware of the significant demand from Ipswich advertisers for a genuinely local radio medium. Page 17
  19. 19. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan a) Overall Financial Strategy These Directors share with the rest of the Board a long-term vision for a new local radio station for Ipswich, targeting the 35 to 64 year old age group who are no longer being catered for by local commercial radio in the area. The Board’s vision is based on sound business principles, considerable local consultations (see answer to Question 7) and extensive market research (see answer to Question 6). The Board of Ipswich Local Radio has first-hand experience of both the demand from the local audience and the demand from local advertisers for a genuine, locally focused station in their hometown. The Board and station management have unrivalled knowledge of the area, ensuring that the company can anticipate the changing market during the twelve-year period of the licence. 3. A Gap in the Market/Programme Policies Ipswich Local Radio has accumulated substantial empirical evidence to demonstrate that there is a significant gap in the market for a locally focused station for Ipswich with general appeal to the 35 to 64 year old audience. Compared to the mass appeal of its predecessor Radio Orwell, SGR FM is more narrowly focused on the younger demographic. The station’s Format defines its audience as “under 40s”, a fact confirmed by recent RAJAR data (see Research Project #5) which shows that 76% of hours listened derive from under-45s and 42% of hours listened derive from under-35s. At the same time, the popularity of SGR FM has waned considerably since the heyday of Radio Orwell. The station’s share of listening has fallen from 15% to 12% over the last five years. Three years ago, it was still the market leader, whereas now it ranks fourth (see Research Project #5). Its sister station, Classic Gold Amber, has fared even worse in recent years. Its Format defines its audience as “over 40s”, but the station attracts a listening share of less than 2% in all but one age group – only in the 45 to 54 year demographic does the station still manage an 8% share (although this dipped to 3% last year). Classic Gold Amber ranks seventh in the market with an overall share of 3% (see Research Project #5). It broadcasts only four hours per day of local programming and no longer has any remnant of the mass audience it attracted when first launched (see answer to Question 2(c)). The declining appeal of these two local commercial stations is certainly no indication of Ipswich residents’ lack of interest in local media. Not only is the circulation of the local evening paper as strong as ever (see answer to Question 2(c)), but the audience for BBC Radio Suffolk is growing phenomenally. Hours listened to the station have increased by 45% over the last five years, and it has moved from #5 to #2 ranking in the market. BBC Radio Suffolk is now the area’s most listened to local radio station (see Research Project #5). The experience of Ipswich Local Radio’s three Restricted Service Licence trial broadcasts (see answer to Question 7) and the knowledge gained from the follow-up market research (see Research Projects #1 and 2)) demonstrated to the Board that there existed sufficient demand in Ipswich for a new local radio station. Page 18
  20. 20. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan a) Overall Financial Strategy In order to ensure that the programming proposals for Ipswich 102 were appropriate for the intended audience, two pieces of market research were commissioned, one qualitative (see Research Project #4) and the other quantitative (see Research Project #8). Within the latter research, a specific station description was offered to respondents, based upon the results of previous findings: A local radio station focused specifically on Ipswich with: • well-know hit songs from the 1960s to the present day • presenters who know and understand the area • hourly local news bulletins during daytime • regular local weather, travel, entertainment and what’s on information • community information and daily interviews or features involving local people • regular publicity for community organisations and their events 79% of the target 35 to 64 old audience said that they would be “very likely” or “likely” to listen to a new radio station of this specific description. Amongst 35 to 44 year olds, the station format was approved by 80% of respondents, and by 82% of 45 to 54 year olds. Ipswich Local Radio believes this empirical evidence demonstrates that not only has a gap in the market been correctly identified, but that the proposed station’s programming plans will be received positively by the intended audience for Ipswich 102 during the twelve-year period of the licence. 4. Skills and Experience Necessary to Maintain the Service The Board of Ipswich Local Radio Limited and the staff of shareholder Laser Broadcasting Limited bring together an unrivalled range of radio management skills and radio industry experience, both in the Ipswich market and elsewhere, to ensure that Ipswich 102 will maintain the highest standards during the entire twelve-year period of its licence. In addition to the directly relevant experience of its Directors (see answer to Question 1(a)), the Board is able to draw upon a wider range of skills and services. The Board has agreed to contract Laser Broadcasting Limited to supply Ipswich Local Radio Limited with a full accounts service, commercial traffic system, commercial production, sales training, IT support and a minimum of 36 hours per month of management time during the launch period, and then 30 hours per month thereafter. The contracted provision of these essential back-office services will ensure that the Ipswich 102 team can concentrate its efforts on delivering the local radio station that Ipswich really wants. Page 19
  21. 21. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan a) Overall Financial Strategy The following key executives with substantial radio experience will ensure that Ipswich Local Radio Limited has the ability to successfully launch and maintain the service throughout the duration of the licence: Peter Barnes (Part-Time Chairman) 20 years experience as a leading Ipswich radio advertiser will prove invaluable to the local sales team. James Hazell (Station Director) 20 years radio broadcasting, programming and management experience in Ipswich, Suffolk and Norfolk. Martina King (Non-Executive Director) 25 years media experience, including six years senior radio sales and management experience. Nigel Reeve (Non-Executive Director) 30 years radio sales and management experience, including four years selling local press and seven years selling radio in Ipswich. Susan Hall (Non-Executive Director) 20 years media accounting experience, including four years in commercial radio. Stuart Linnell (Laser Broadcasting) 30 years radio experience, including 20 years senior radio management and programming experience. Grant Goddard (Laser Broadcasting) 20 years radio programming, management and research experience in the UK, Europe and Asia. David Mortimer (Laser Broadcasting) 10 years radio management and programming experience. As with any radio station, the launch period is critical, which is why Ipswich Local Radio has assembled an experienced launch team to ensure that the station achieves the highest possible standards during the first twelve months after the award. Page 20
  22. 22. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan 5. a) Overall Financial Strategy Board/Shareholders Structured to Provide Stability The Board of Ipswich Local Radio has been structured to benefit from an appropriate balance of radio experience and business experience. In total, the Directors bring to the Board 60 years of commercial radio knowledge, in combination with 90 years of Ipswich area business experience. The Directors represent the whole 100% of the share issue of Ipswich Local Radio Limited, through the use of a Consortium nominee on the Board. This use of a Consortium provides a constructive answer to the Board’s desire to balance breadth of ownership with the need to make the decision making process very simple and easy to manage, ensuring that Ipswich Local Radio can react quickly to changes in the market. If successful with this licence application, the investors in Ipswich Local Radio Ltd will qualify for Enterprise Investment Scheme tax relief on their investment. To derive the full tax advantage, shareholders must retain their holding for at least three years from the date of share issue. In addition, it is the Board’s policy to aim to pay the first dividend after five years of trading, which will further ensure that long-term retention of shareholdings remains attractive to the investors. The stability of this corporate structure enables the Board to plan and develop the company over the twelve-year period of the Ipswich 102 licence. 6. Funding The shareholders and Consortium members of Ipswich Local Radio have gone far beyond simply offering their skills and experience to develop the business plan for the proposed radio station. They have spent time and money investing in trial broadcasts, awareness building, research and consultations (see answers to Questions 6 and 7). Over the last three years, they have invested £97,000 in the project. Post-award, existing shareholders have committed a further £543,000 in order to launch the station and maintain it for the full period of the licence. This sum is comprised of £405,000 committed before the station goes on-air, with the option to draw down a further £138,000 if required. Based on the projections detailed in the profit and loss account, these sums will be sufficient to avoid requiring an overdraft facility, even when a sensitivity test is applied that reduces projected revenues by 20%. However, the company’s banker, Lloyds TSB, has indicated that an overdraft facility could be arranged, if required post-award. A copy of this letter can be supplied on request. In addition, Laser Broadcasting Limited has agreed to underwrite any required funding, if shares in Ipswich Local Radio were to be made available. As per the shareholders’ agreement, any shares in Ipswich Local Radio that become available must be offered to the existing shareholders in the first instance. There exists a clear commitment from the shareholders to finance the company to the level required. Page 21
  23. 23. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan 7. a) Overall Financial Strategy Accounting Policies The Board of Ipswich Local Radio Limited has produced a realistic business plan that is based on the following assumptions: • • • • • • • Conservative audience forecasts, with a projected weekly reach in Year One of 17%, rising by Year Three to 19%, based upon empirical evidence of recent local station start-ups of comparable size (see answer to Question 2(d)); Conservative revenue projections based upon a Total Survey Area of 250,000 adults – the estimated coverage in the Ofcom licence advertisement – rather than Arqiva’s projected coverage of 295,869 adults (see answer to Question 3), because the former figure more accurately represents the station’s core Ipswich market; The benchmark industry average revenue of £30 per 1000 hours per annum listened was used to produce the financial forecasts. The results were then discounted by 15% in Years One, Two and Three to incorporate the time lag between advertisers’ booking of campaigns and the availability of the station’s published audience data; Realistic expenditure projections for the station launch that include £36,000 to be spent on local promotions and advertising in Year One and £30,000 for marketing in the pre-launch period; A projected operating profit in Year Three; Projections that require no overdraft, even if revenue records a shortfall of 20%; The first dividend to be paid to shareholders after five years. These are the policies on which Ipswich Local Radio Limited’s business plan is based. It is the Board’s stated intention to deliver a profit in Year Three, not to have to resort to any form of borrowing, and to pay a dividend to shareholders after five years. The financial planning involved in Ipswich Local Radio’s business plan has been rigorous, detailed and based on reasonable assumptions. 8. Investor Strategy From the time in August 2003 when the Consortium for Ipswich Local Radio was first formalised, the strategy of the company’s investors has been discussed and agreed upon in its monthly meetings. The main points of Ipswich Local Radio Limited’s investor strategy to date are: • • • • • • • • Investors must have their roots in Ipswich and/or a proven association with the area; The focus of the enterprise is to build a successful local radio station in Ipswich for the residents and business community of Ipswich; The company will remain focused on long-term growth and the integrity of its product; Investors are involved for the potential long-term returns rather than immediate short-term gains; The company should remain fully funded with no borrowing requirement; A shareholder agreement requires that any shares for sale are offered, in the first instance, to existing shareholders in proportion to their existing holdings; Investors will qualify for full tax relief under the Enterprise Investment Scheme only if their shareholdings are retained three years from issue date (under existing legislation); Dividends will be returned to shareholders at the end of Year Five; Page 22
  24. 24. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan • • • • (b) a) Overall Financial Strategy b) Funding Shareholders are committed to the establishment and maintenance of the business for the full duration of the permanent licence; Simulcast opportunities via internet and cable streaming are important ways to extend the station’s potential audience; Opportunities to increase the radio station’s penetration through DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) in the Ipswich area will be pursued when multiplexes become available; An ongoing programme of market research will ensure that the station remains relevant and focused on the listeners and advertising community in Ipswich at whom it is aimed. Funding Detail the sources of finance that will be used to fund the licence, under the following headings: (i) Share capital Post-award, 221,854 shares will have been issued in the company, raising a total of £640,218. (ii) Loan stock None (iii) Leasing/HP facilities (capital value) Three company vehicles with a capital value of £30,000 will be leased. (iv) Bank overdraft Ipswich Local Radio Limited’s business plan does not anticipate the need for an overdraft. However, the company’s banker, Lloyds TSB, has indicated that such a facility would be made available. (v) Grants and donations None (vi) Other (please specify) None Where relevant, provide information on: (i) Loan terms (e.g. interest rate, repayment terms, redemption/conversion terms) Not applicable (ii) Assets leased Ipswich Local Radio Limited will lease three company vehicles over a three-year period. A written quote is available upon request. All of the funding above should be confirmed to the applicant. Explanation should be provided if this is not the case. Page 23
  25. 25. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan c) Financial Projections The purpose of this question is to allow the applicant to demonstrate its understanding of the market. The forecasts should be based on reasonable assumptions, that are logically applied and justifiable. Understanding The Market Ipswich is the county town of Suffolk and a major commercial centre for the East of England region. It has a stable, diverse economic base that has produced a thriving business community. 310,000 people live within ten miles of Ipswich, and 8,800 commuters travel to work in Ipswich daily. 58,800 people are employed in Ipswich in nearly 3,000 workplaces. 1. The population The headline data for the Ipswich local authority district (adult 15+ population: 93,996 Census 2001) might give the impression that it is a town in decline. The total population fell by 2.6% between 1982 and 2002, compared with an 11.2% increase for the East of England region. Data from the 2001 Census shows that, of the 48 local authorities in the East of England region, Ipswich had: • • • • • • The fifth highest proportion of one-parent households (32%, compared to the average for East of England of 28%); The fourth highest proportion of households without a car (29%, compared to the average for East of England of 20%); The ninth highest proportion of one-parent households with children (7%, compared to the average for East of England of 5%); The sixth highest proportion of unemployed adults (4%, compared to the average for East of England of 3%); The ninth highest proportion of adults with no qualifications (34%, compared to the average for East of England of 28%); The highest proportion of households without central heating (15%, compared to the average for East of England of 5%). In June 2003, the proportion of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance in Ipswich was 4%, compared to the Suffolk average of 2% and the UK average of 3%. In 2002, average gross weekly earnings in Ipswich were £342.96, compared to the East of England average of £374.31. Seven of Ipswich’s sixteen wards fall within the government’s definition of the 20% most deprived wards in England. And only 30% of working age people in Ipswich hold qualifications equal to or above NVQ3 level, compared to the East of England average of 41%. However, the bare statistics fail to show the substantial transformation that has been made to Ipswich in recent years as part of the largest urban regeneration project in Suffolk. The local authorities have worked with the private sector to transform Ipswich into a smaller version of major UK cities such as Birmingham or Manchester. The aim is to ensure that Ipswich can thrive independently of its proximity to London, even though it benefits from being within commuting distance. The National Statistics Office classifies Ipswich as a “New And Growing Town” in its “Prospering UK” category, a characteristic it shares in the East of England region with “new towns” such as Peterborough, Basildon and Thurrock. The government’s analysis of a range of statistical data concludes that the UK towns that Ipswich most closely resembles are Gloucester and Plymouth. Page 24
  26. 26. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan c) Financial Projections The present age structure of Ipswich’s population is close to the national average (average age 38.2 years, compared to the mean for England & Wales of 38.6). In 2002, the total fertility rate in Ipswich was 1.74 (compared to the UK average of 1.64); and in 2003, the mortality ratio in Ipswich was 95 (compared to the UK average of 100). Like other areas, the town’s population will skew more towards older age groups in the future. National Statistics Office data for Ipswich projects a 10% total population increase between 2003 and 2028, with a 10% increase in 35-44 year olds, a 6% increase in 45-54 year olds, and a 30% increase in 55-64 year olds. As a result, by 2028, 35-64 year olds will form 38% of the Ipswich population, compared to 36% in 2003. And over-35s will form 58% of the population, compared to 53% in 2003. 2. The Local Economy In recent years, Ipswich has evolved into what the borough council describes as a “regional centre of excellence”, attracting visitors to its shopping, entertainment and leisure facilities in the pedestrian-friendly town centre. Funding from the East of England Development Agency has assisted the £20m development of Ipswich’s Cardinal Park leisure facility that includes an eleven-screen cinema, music bar, nightclub and restaurants, all five minutes walk from the town centre and waterfront. Ipswich’s location is ideal for connecting suppliers with domestic and overseas markets. The area is served by Stansted, the UK’s fourth largest airport, which has excellent freight facilities only 52 miles from Ipswich. The A12 and A14 four-lane roads link Ipswich with London, Cambridge and the Midlands. Four trains an hour make the one-hour journey to London’s Liverpool Street station. There is a cross-country rail link to Peterborough and the North. Ipswich is the hub of a regional bus network that links to Suffolk, North Essex and beyond. The town is also on the trans-European Transport Network, linking the UK with the Benelux countries. The Haven Gateway port area of Ipswich is a centre for the shipping industry, handling short-sea and agricultural bulk cargo through roll-on-roll-off facilities. Twelve miles from Ipswich is Felixstowe, the UK’s largest container terminal. Employment in Ipswich is 4.3 times the UK average in insurance and pensions; 3.8 times the UK average in information technology; 2.4 times the UK average in manufacturing; and twice the UK average in port, shipping and transport operations. A study commissioned by the East of England Development Agency in 2002 said that “the Cambridge to Ipswich hi-tech corridor could contribute substantially in future to the step change in economic performance…. to 2010.” As part of its ambitious regeneration programme, Ipswich Borough Council has set itself the following objectives to be achieved by 2010: • • • • • • Establishment of a university for Suffolk in Ipswich; Reduction of unemployment levels in under-performing wards; Average earnings to match those of the East of England region; Increase the number of new business start-ups by one third; Increase by 10% the floor area available for employment premises; Increase by one third the proportion of the workforce qualified to NVQ3 level. Page 25
  27. 27. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan c) Financial Projections A recent report by a UK property company predicted that Ipswich would benefit from “a property boom in the forthcoming five years”. It noted that prices remain high for residential property in all areas within commuting distance of the City of London. The report says that this has produced a substantial ripple effect on property prices in commuter towns throughout East London and Essex, from Stratford to Colchester. As City commuters are driven further and further out of London by ever increasing property prices, these commutable towns are reaping the benefit. The report concludes: “Ipswich has yet to feel the full impact of this, but is clearly the next candidate”. In 2002, a semi-detached house in Ipswich cost an average £101,197, substantially less than the East of England average of £137,887, making the town an affordable option for commuters wanting to move out of London. 41% of households in Ipswich are semi-detached houses, considerably higher than the 31% average for the East of England. 3. The Local Media As a county town, Ipswich is home to two daily regional newspapers and two weeklies. The East Anglian Daily Times and The Evening Star are the morning and evening editions of Suffolk’s oldest newspapers, established in 1874 and 1883 respectively. The morning paper is a former broadsheet that serves the whole county of Suffolk, with a total circulation of 39,297, although only 4,185 copies are sold in Ipswich [JICREG 2005]. The evening paper is considerably more tabloid, with a total circulation of 24,896, of which 16,938 copies are sold in Ipswich [JICREG 2005]. Display advertising rates are £8.55 and £7.35 per column centimetre for the morning and evening papers respectively. Whereas The Daily Times produces a single edition for the whole region, The Evening Star has three different local editions, of which the Ipswich one achieves 31% penetration [JICREG 2005]. The weeklies are the paid-for Green Un (established in 1920) that covers mainly football and the free Ipswich Advertiser (established 1988) that is delivered door-to-door with a circulation of 46,615 in the town [JICREG 2005]. All four newspapers are owned by Norwich-based publisher Archant, that has enjoyed no local competition since the demise of The East Suffolk Mercury in 2000. In its submission to a Competition Commission enquiry last year, convened to consider the implications of its purchase of several London newspaper titles, Archant described itself as “a small, family-owned community media business”. The Commission’s own research showed that Archant is the UK’s fourth largest regional newspaper group, owning 85 titles with a combined weekly circulation of almost three million copies. Local businesses in Ipswich have no choice but to use Archant when they want local press advertising. In the radio medium, GCap Media sells advertising for both Ipswich-based local commercial radio stations - SGR FM and Classic Gold Amber (a third station, Vibe FM, is owned by EMAP but is regional and targets only the youth audience with a specialist music format). SGR FM is part of GCap’s newly created The One Network which the company describes as “a network of 39 local stations, each giving listeners vibrant, engaging, quality output, featuring high profile presenters, celebrity guests, local importance and the best contemporary music.” GCap promises that “each station in The One Network is at the heart of its community, broadcasting to listeners who are young, ‘up for it’ and very much in touch with what’s happening in their local environment.” Page 26
  28. 28. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan c) Financial Projections Research commissioned by Ipswich Local Radio (see Research Project #6) demonstrated that, although it is based in Ipswich, SGR FM includes remarkably little local content for Ipswich in its programming. In a typical weekday’s daytime output, only six different news stories about Ipswich were broadcast, four of which were about Ipswich Football Club (Ipswich stories made up only 16% of the total stories); only eight pieces of what’s on information referred to events in Ipswich; and only 28% of travel information items pertained to Ipswich. The other station for which GCap sells advertising, Classic Gold Amber, includes just as little content specifically for Ipswich, as its licence requires it to broadcast only four hours per day (weekdays) of locally-produced programming. The remaining shows are networked across all eighteen Classic Gold stations in the UK. Research commissioned by Ipswich Local Radio (see Research Project #6) demonstrated that, in a typical weekday’s daytime output of Classic Gold Amber, Ipswich stories accounted for only 16% of the total news items; and only ten pieces of what’s on information referred to events in Ipswich. Analysis of RAJAR data shows that the audience ratings of both SGR FM and Classic Gold Amber are presently at an all-time low (see Research Project #5). Five years ago, SGR FM was the market leader in Ipswich, but it has since slipped to fourth place. Over the same period, Classic Gold Amber’s share of radio listening has almost halved and it presently ranks seventh in the market. Both stations have lost a significant proportion of their audiences, at the same time as they have considerably reduced the proportion of local content within their output. The decline of SGR FM and Classic Gold Amber is certainly not the result of any ambivalence towards local issues by the Ipswich population. On the contrary, while the performance of the two local commercial stations has diminished, BBC Radio Suffolk has moved from fifth to second place in the Ipswich market, despite its editorial coverage extending across the whole county rather than Ipswich alone. It has not always been this way. For more than twenty years, local commercial radio had enjoyed a healthy audience in Ipswich, since Radio Orwell launched as one of the UK’s first commercial radio stations in 1975. The station was a runaway success, both with listeners and with advertisers. In 1979, Radio Orwell had a 48% reach and 15.1 average hours listened [RSGB/JICRAR]. In 1995, the renamed SGR FM was still achieving impressive results, with a 38% reach, 11.0 average hours and a 21% share of listening [RAJAR]. Even in 1999, SGR FM still recorded a 21% share of listening. But, by the first quarter of 2005, SGR FM’s reach had dipped to 31% and its share had fallen substantially to 12% (see Research Project #5). In 1990, Radio Broadland in Norfolk bought Radio Orwell, and then the station was renamed SGR (Suffolk Group Radio) in 1992, following a merger with Saxon Radio in Bury St Edmonds, which Broadland had also bought. In 1994, Broadland’s group was renamed East Anglian Radio and it re-launched the AM service of the former FM/AM simulcast as Amber Radio with oldies music targeted at the over-35 audience. GWR bought East Anglian Radio in 1997 for £24m, and was merged earlier this year with Capital Radio into the new GCap Media plc. The decline of the renamed Classic Gold Amber AM station has been even more precipitous. In 1995, soon after launch, it achieved a 24% reach and 7.1 average hours [RAJAR]. By 2000, its reach had fallen to 12% and it attracted a 6% share of listening [RAJAR]. By the first quarter of 2005, the station’s reach had fallen to 8% and its share was down to 3%, placing it seventh in the market (see Research Project #5). Page 27
  29. 29. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan c) Financial Projections In July 2002, SGR FM Managing Director Mike Stewart had told the Evening Star that the station’s licence renewal had not been challenged by any competing bid: “I guess any competition thought they would be on a hiding to nothing as we are comfortably the top station in our area with very loyal listeners and advertisers.” At the time, SGR FM was the market leader but, within one year, it had dropped to fourth place behind BBC Radio Two, BBC Radio Suffolk and BBC Radio Four (see Research Project #5). The falling audiences for SGR FM and Classic Gold Amber become even more perplexing when one considers that the Ipswich local radio market is still relatively underdeveloped, as the only new entrants since 1975 have been Amber Radio in 1994 and the launch of a single regional station – Vibe FM – in 1997. Although it is impossible to directly link the cause and effect of programming changes and falling ratings, the view shared by many industry observers is that the decline of both SGR FM and Classic Gold Amber is a result of less locally-orientated programming output and more networked programming on both stations. Research commissioned by Ipswich Local Radio (see Research Project #6) showed that, during a typical weekday daytime’s programming, only six different news stories concerning Ipswich were broadcast by either SGR FM or Classic Gold Amber, and four of those stories concerned Ipswich Football Club. Furthermore, there were very few mentions of Ipswich in daytime presenters’ talk, despite both stations being located in Ipswich. It is the contention of Ipswich Local Radio that the lack of local content within these existing local commercial stations’ output contributes significantly towards the gap in the market that exists for a new station. There is no doubt that Ipswich can generate sufficient news stories to build a new, highly locally focused radio station. Analysis of a random issue of the Ipswich edition of The Evening Star [16 August 2005] showed that it published 30 news stories on that day that specifically mentioned Ipswich or the River Orwell. There is every reason to believe that a locally focused radio station covering a substantial number of local news stories could be every bit as successful as The Evening Star, which enjoys 31% penetration in Ipswich [JICREG 2005]. In putting together its business plan for Ipswich 102, the Board of Ipswich Local Radio Limited has been determined to utilise as much empirical evidence as possible about the local market, existing media within it, and the dynamics of the town’s population and the economy. In this, the Board has been fortunate in benefiting from the wealth of local knowledge and experience provided by its Directors, many of who have had significant involvement with the commercial radio industry since its earliest days in Ipswich. It is through those shared experiences that the Board fully understands the gap that exists in the market for listeners who want a truly locally-focused station, and the gap that exists for potential local advertisers who presently have the choice of only Archant and GCap Media in the two most important local media – print and radio. The Board of Ipswich Local Radio is committed to offering both listeners and advertisers a genuine alternative to existing local media. Page 28
  30. 30. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan c) Financial Projections The applicant should provide financial projections on an annual basis for the licence. The projections must include: (i) Profit and loss accounts (ii) Balance sheets (iii) Cash-flow forecasts The period covered is at the discretion of the applicant, but should be justified. The forecasts should be supplied on an Excel spreadsheet or similar, with any accompanying guidance notes. The applicant must also complete and submit the spreadsheet entitled ‘Financial Template’ located at www.ofcom.org.uk/radio/ifi/rl/commer/ar/lapr/ftap.xls using information from its business model. All financial projections, plus the “Financial Template”, are included as Appendices 3 and 4. In addition to profit and loss accounts, balance sheets and cash flow forecasts for the first three years, also included are full details of all workings, the sensitivity analysis, depreciation, staff costs, revenue calculations and pre-operational expenditure. The projections are based on the first three years of trading. Ipswich Local Radio Limited has decided to submit projections for the first three years, as this takes the company through to its first full year of projected profits. This section must include a full listing of the underlying assumptions on which the financial projections are based, relating such assumptions clearly to other parts of the application (e.g. proposed format, extent of coverage area) Underlying assumptions are as follows: • • • • • • • • • Ipswich 102 will broadcast to an adult population of 295,869, although a more conservative estimate of 250,000 (as specified in the Ofcom licence advertisement) has been used for revenue projections; Ipswich 102’s programming of local news, information and music will appeal to all adults in the area, but have particular appeal to both sexes aged 35 to 64; Ipswich 102 will launch no later than six months post-award; Tangible assets will be purchased outright prior to broadcast. The asset depreciation policy is defined in the attached financial information at Appendix 4; Revenue projections have been based on rationale acquired through trial broadcasts, industry standards, market research and knowledge of existing advertising rates in the local marketplace; Royalties are calculated on the current published percentages; Sales commission is calculated as 3% of revenue; A management services contract has been agreed with Laser Broadcasting Limited to supply Ipswich 102 with back-office services such as accounting, sales training and commercial traffic scheduling; Vehicle leasing for the sales executive cars is based upon a written quote from a local supplier; Page 29
  31. 31. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan • • • • c) Financial Projections The vehicle to be purchased outright is to be used by the news team for outside broadcasts and brand awareness; Premises will be leased and the cost is based on a similar property available at the time of application; Bad debt provision in based on 1% of budgeted revenue. It is the intention of the Ipswich Local Radio Limited Board to operate a strict debt collection policy that requires new customers in Year One to pay for commercials before they are broadcast. Credit facilities will be offered subsequently as the debtor profile becomes apparent; The transmission facilities will be supplied by Arqiva under a Total Broadcast Contract. Arqiva will design, procure, install, commission and maintain the system, as well as be responsible for any necessary replacement equipment, repairs and emergency callouts. This arrangement requires no capital outlay from Ipswich Local Radio Limited, as payment for this service is made by monthly Direct Debit for the contracted period of the licence. It is intended to site the transmitter at Arqiva’s recommended location at Warren Heath (see answer to Question 3). The applicant should detail how revenue figures were derived, distinguishing between local, national and sponsorship revenue. The response to this question may be submitted in confidence. Revenue figures were derived as follows: • • • • • • • • Projected weekly reach in Year One of 17%, rising by Year Three to 19%, and projected average hours have been benchmarked against empirical evidence of recent local station start-ups of comparable size (see answer to Question 2(d)); Conservative revenue projections are based upon a Total Survey Area of 250,000 adults – the estimated coverage in the Ofcom licence advertisement – rather than Arqiva’s projected coverage of 295,869 adults (see answer to Question 3), because the former figure represents the station’s core Ipswich market; The benchmark industry average revenue of £30 per 1000 hours per annum listened was used to produce the financial forecasts. The results were then discounted by 15% in Years One, Two and Three to incorporate the time lag between advertisers’ booking of campaigns and the availability of the station’s published audience data; National revenue has been assumed to be 1.5% of total revenues; Local revenue has been assumed to be 73.5% of total revenues; Sponsorship income has been assumed to be 20% of total revenues. This is slightly higher than the national average, but justified in this area due to the developed radio market; Income from promotions has been assumed to be 5% of total revenues; Commercial production costs have been assumed to be 7% of total revenues. Page 30
  32. 32. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan d) Audience Projections Provide the following information: (i) The projected adult (aged 15+) population of the Total Survey Area (TSA) within which it is intended to measure the listenership of the service. The projected adult population (aged 15+) is 295,869. This has been derived from 2001 Census data and the coverage prediction supplied by Arqiva (see answer to Question 3). This is the population count against a signal strength of 54 dBuV/m. (ii) Projections for listenership ratings (e.g. weekly reach, average weekly hours of listening) over the first three years of the service, with detailed demographic breakdowns as appropriate. The Board’s analysis has determined that the station’s projected performance will be: Year One Year Two Year Three Adult (15+) TSA 295,869 295,869 295,869 Weekly reach % 17% 18% 19% Reach no. 50,298 53,256 56,215 Average hours/week 7.0 hrs 8.0 hrs 9.0 hrs 352,086 426,048 505,935 Total hours Extensive market research (see answers to Question 6) has demonstrated the wide appeal of the proposed radio station to a substantial proportion of the potential audience between the ages of 35 and 64. This age group comprises 45% of the adult population of Ipswich. Additionally, there is likely to be some overlap of the station’s appeal to 30-34 and 65-70 year olds, who comprise a further 15% of the adult population. (iii) The expected impact of the proposed service on existing services, in listenership terms. The expected impact of Ipswich 102 in Year One will reduce listening hours to these stations by these amounts within the station’s Total Survey Area: • • • • • • • • • • • • SGR FM (59,939 hours per week less) BBC Radio Two (50,475 hours per week less) BBC Radio One (33,124 hours per week less) BBC Radio Suffolk (28,392 hours per week) BBC Radio Five Live (22,082 hours per week less) BBC Radio Four (17,351 hours per week less) Classic FM (17,351 hours per week less) Classic Gold Amber (17,351 hours per week less) TalkSport (11,041 hours per week less) Virgin Radio (6,309 hours per week less) Dream 100 (6,309 hours per week less) Other stations (6,309 hours per week less) Page 31
  33. 33. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 2. Financial and business plan (iv) d) Audience Projections The basis on which the estimates above have been calculated, and any assumptions taken into account. Audience Projections: The Board’s projections for the performance of the station in its first three years have been derived from statistical analysis of empirical data from RAJAR ratings reports. A benchmark was provided by the start-up performances of all 19 local (not regional) commercial radio stations with Total Survey Areas of between 100,000 and 400,000 that had commenced broadcasting since 1999 and had participated in RAJAR. Their average performance at the end of each of their first three years on-air was as follows: Year One Year Two Year Three Weekly reach % 17.2% 18.4% 18.6% Average hours/week 9.4 hrs 8.7 hrs 9.7 hrs Ipswich 102’s programme format is comparable to the stations included in this analysis, and its target audience, like those stations, is by no means a niche demographic. These figures were rounded and revised with a more natural year-on-year progression to arrive at the projections for the station’s performance in the first three years. The year-on-year increase in hours listened has been approximated to 20% for Years Two and Three, a rate of growth observed in start-up stations in similarly sized markets. Impact on existing services: The Board’s projections for the impact of the new station on existing broadcasters have been derived from quantitative market research (see Research Project #8). Of those respondents aged 35-64 who said they would be “very likely” or “likely” to listen to the new station: • • • 9.8% said they would listen to the radio for longer 73.0% said they would listen less to existing stations; 5.4% said they would stop listening to another station(s) altogether. Asked which stations they were likely to listen to less (or stop listening to completely), respondents aged 35 to 64 said: • • • • • • • • • • • • SGR FM (21.7%) BBC Radio Two (18.3%) BBC Radio One (12.0%) BBC Radio Suffolk (10.3%) BBC Radio Five Live (8.0%) BBC Radio Four (6.3%) Classic FM (6.3%) Classic Gold Amber (6.3%) TalkSport (4.0%) Virgin Radio (2.3%) Dream 100 (2.3%) Other stations (2.3%) The hours reduced from these stations’ listening in Year One have been calculated by assuming that 78.4% (the sum of the 73% who will listen less and the 5.4% who will stop listening altogether to other stations) of total hours listened to Ipswich 102 in Year One will replace them on a one-for-one basis in proportion to respondents’ preferences (the above percentages are rounded from more precise spreadsheet calculations). Page 32
  34. 34. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 3. Transmission Proposals (i) Provide details of the transmission site you propose to use, under the following headings: (a) Name and National Grid Reference of site Site Name: National Grid Reference: (b) Warren Heath TM 196425 Height of site above Ordnance datum (in metres) 34 metres (c) Height of transmitting aerial above ground level 45 metres (d) Radiated power in either or both planes of polarisation, and aerial radiation pattern (if no aerial radiation pattern is submitted, it will be assumed without exception to be omni-directional). Radiated Power: 1000 watts vertical + 250 watts horizontal Pattern: Antenna pattern is Directional. A copy of the radiated pattern is included as Appendix 5. The applicant should confirm whether he believes that his intended mast aperture will be available, and whether, where required, planning permission can be obtained. Where appropriate, evidence to support this belief should be provided. Details of any negotiations which have been entered into with the site owner should also be provided. Arqiva has informed Ipswich Local Radio Limited that a suitable site is available at Warren Heath with accommodation and aperture space available for the antenna system. Planning permission is required for the antenna but, because this is an established telecoms transmission site, Arqiva believes that permission from the planning authorities should not be a problem. The information provided above must take into account any requirements set out in Section 2 of this Notice. In the event of minor non-compliance, Ofcom may revisit an applicant’s proposals with a view to modest adjustment following award and closer scrutiny. Significant non-compliance may render the application liable to disqualification. (ii) Please provide a detailed computer predicted map (in colour) of the coverage anticipated using the transmission site and parameters described above. Arqiva Coverage Predictions for the area are attached as Appendix 6. Page 33
  35. 35. Section 105(a): Ability to maintain proposed service 3. Transmission Proposals (iii) Describe proposed arrangements for transmission provision (installation, maintenance and repair). The transmission system and equipment must comply with the Engineering Code originally published by the Radio Authority, which represents Ofcom’s current policy, and is available at www.ofcom.org.uk/radio/ifi/rl/commer/ar/ Arqiva is well resourced to install the complete system and subsequently maintain and monitor the transmission parameters. Telemetry and remote monitoring systems provide critical information back to Arqiva’s control centre (carrier power, lack of modulation, etc.) on a 24-hour basis. Arqiva’s maintenance personnel are highly trained with the necessary spares and test equipment to resolve any problem quickly. (iv) What is the anticipated time lapse between the award of licence and start of broadcasting? Applicants should note that failure to commence broadcasting the service within two years of the date on which the licence is awarded is likely to lead to the offer of a licence to the successful applicant being withdrawn. In these circumstances the licence would be advertised afresh and a new competition would be held to award the licence. Ipswich Local Radio Limited plans to launch Ipswich 102 within 26 weeks of the licence award. Page 34
  36. 36. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy (i) This subsection of the application should take the form of a statement setting out the applicant’s overall programming philosophy and vision for the radio service. The programming philosophy for Ipswich 102 has been carefully formulated and developed during the many meetings of the group since 2002. The plans for the station derive from a huge amount of information, knowledge and empirical evidence that has been assembled by the Board of Ipswich Local Radio Limited since then: • • • • • • The three trial broadcasts under the name Ipswich Local Radio in 2003, 2004 and 2005 have provided the Board with ideal opportunities to: experiment with different programming strategies; to listen to and evaluate the direct feedback received from Ipswich residents to these broadcasts; and to amend and improve the Board’s vision of its proposed permanent station Ipswich 102; The series of face-to-face consultations organised by the Board over the last three years has provided perfect opportunities for the potential listeners and potential advertisers of Ipswich 102 to talk to the Directors about the things they want from a new local radio station; The Board has commissioned a wealth of market research since 2003 (see answer to Question 6) to provide it with objective empirical evidence that can inform its decision making processes at every stage in the development of its plans for the station; The Board’s intimate knowledge of the Ipswich media market has provided a unique perspective on the changes that have occurred there over several decades, along with first-hand experience of those ideas that work, and those ideas that do not work, for listeners and advertisers in the town; Detailed knowledge of the output of existing stations audible in Ipswich, provided both by the Directors and by professional analysis (see Research Project #6), has ensured that that the plans for Ipswich 102 will significantly broaden the options available to listeners in the market; A specific description of the Ipswich 102 format has resulted from the information, opinions and knowledge received by the Board, and has been tested in market research (see Research Project #8). The Ipswich 102 format description received a huge amount of support, with 79% of 35 to 64 year olds saying that they would be “very likely” or “likely” to listen to such a new local radio station. The specific station description that was developed over three years and which received such positive support from potential listeners is: A local radio station focused specifically on Ipswich with: o well-know hit songs from the 1960s to the present day o presenters who know and understand the area o hourly local news bulletins during daytime o regular local weather, travel, entertainment and what’s on information o community information and daily interviews or features involving local people o regular publicity for community organisations and their events The most important word in this description is “local”. That is what the Board and the Directors have been told repeatedly – by participants in the market research, by the people who attended the consultations, and by the Ipswich residents who listened to the three trial broadcasts that were organised. The word “local” is as important to the Board as it is to them, and it plays a key role in everything the company does. Page 35
  37. 37. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy Ipswich Local Radio Limited believes it is no coincidence that those independent stations across the UK that place the greatest emphasis on genuinely local programming attract the most numerous and loyal audiences. Neither is it mere coincidence that the declining audience for local commercial radio in Ipswich (see Research Project #5) coincides with a perception by both listeners and advertisers that existing stations suffer a lack of “localness”. To test the wealth of anecdotal evidence that the Board had received from the Ipswich population, a detailed analysis of the daytime output of existing local commercial stations was commissioned (see Research Project #6). It confirmed that, in a typical twelve hours of weekday daytime programming on SGR FM: • Only 16% of all news stories were about Ipswich; • Only six different Ipswich news stories were broadcast, four of which were about Ipswich Football Club; • Only a quarter of the travel information was about Ipswich; • Only eight items of what’s on information for Ipswich events were broadcast. The programming philosophy detailed within this application seeks to address this situation by creating a truly local radio station for the people of Ipswich. A station that has no desire or aspiration to be anything other than what it says it is – Ipswich 102: Ipswich Local Radio. The audience for Ipswich 102 will be the same people who each day buy 16,938 copies of the Ipswich edition of The Evening Star [JICREG 2005] to find out precisely what is going on in their town, providing the paper with a phenomenal 31% penetration in Ipswich. Like The Star, Ipswich 102 will tell the audience what is going on in their town, but with the added benefits of an ability to enter into direct dialogue with the audience and a news immediacy that local newspapers can never hope to match. Encouraging and maintaining contact with the station’s audience will be fundamental to Ipswich 102’s programming policies, with phone-in, text and e-mail access used regularly within the station’s programming. The audience will play a critical role in determining the direction of programmes through their on-air and off-air contributions. Listeners will also be directed to the Ipswich 102 website that will become an important supportive resource to the station’s programme output. Ipswich 102 will be an inclusive service, accurately reflecting the character of the area through the active participation and engagement of local people. Local voices will be key to the sound and style of the radio station. The station’s programme content will touch the lives of everyone living in and around Ipswich with information vital to their everyday lives. News and sport programmes will keep the audience up-to-date with the latest events in the Ipswich area, in the UK and across the world. National and international events will be presented in a way that relates to the local audience. News, sport, weather, traffic and what’s on information will appear regularly throughout the day’s output. Page 36
  38. 38. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy (ii) The strategies which the applicant proposes to implement in regard to: • catering for the tastes and interests, general or particular, of persons living in the area; Ipswich 102 will be a truly distinctive service in a market dominated by stations, both commercial and BBC, that seek to reach audiences across most or all of Suffolk. It will be essential listening for anyone who wants news, information and discussion about the issues that matter most to those living in and around Ipswich. It will be a forum for listeners to discuss and debate topics that are important to them, from war to weather, from finance to fashion, from politics to pubs, all programmed within a music format that reflects the tastes of the target age group of 35 to 64 year olds. Ipswich 102 will be a full service radio station, offering a lively, entertaining and provocative mix of speech and music, balanced to maximise its appeal to the target audience. This is the programming format perfected by Ipswich Local Radio through its three trial Restricted Service Licence broadcasts in 2003, 2004 and 2005. The feedback received from listeners was extremely positive and encouraging to the Board’s plans for a permanent station. In market research (see Research Project #1) after the first trial broadcast, out of those people who heard the station: • 88% said the local content was “very good” or “good”; • 84% said the music was “very good” or “good”; • 82% said the news and information was “very good” or “good”; • 80% said the music/speech mix was “very good” or “good”; • 81% of 35-64 year olds said they would be “very likely” or “likely” to listen to a permanent version of Ipswich Local Radio. In market research (see Research Project #2) after the third trial broadcast, opinions were equally positive: • The wide range of music was appreciated; • The amount of time given to local news stories satisfied people; • Travel information was considered very important; • Local sports coverage was considered good; • Local what’s on information was appreciated; • Presenters on the trial broadcasts satisfied the audience; • There was general satisfaction with the content of the station. In a further, more detailed market research study that considered the programming elements of a new, permanent station for Ipswich (see Research Project #4), the participants told the Board that: • SGR FM was “boring” and detached from the area it served; • BBC Radio Suffolk was presently a favoured source of local news; • They wanted hourly news bulletins, with additional opportunities for more detailed coverage of important local news stories; • Local travel information was considered important and should improve on SGR FM’s coverage; • Local what’s on information was welcomed, as it was felt to be inadequately covered on SGR FM; • Sports news was important, particularly local sports that were not so well known; • Discussions and phone-ins were welcomed, though not too frequently; • Local business features would be of interest; • The new radio station should be approachable and friendly; Page 37
  39. 39. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy • • • Presenters should be friendly and know the area; Speech elements should not dominate the stations’ output (as happens on BBC Radio Suffolk); A radio station that included these elements would be added to the repertoire of listeners’ favoured radio stations. In the final piece of market research before submitting this application (see Research Project #8), the Board learnt that of its 35 to 64 year old target audience: • 79% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing local travel information; • 77% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing local what’s on information; • 76% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing hourly local news; • 75% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing community billboard information; • 73% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing local weather reports; • 69% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing local sports news; • 67% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing interviews with local people; • 70% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing hits songs from the 1970s; • 68% are “very interested” or “interested” in hearing hit songs from the 1980s. The results (in considerably more detail) of all this research have formed the foundation of the programming plans for Ipswich 102. Post-award, the Board will continue to commission further research projects to ensure that the station remains relevant to the needs of its audience. The Board recognises that a creative enterprise such as a local radio station is functioning in a marketplace that is forever changing and transforming. In order for the radio station to thrive in the long run, it is essential to understand and react to those changes so that the output continues to reflect the needs and aspirations of its audience. News News will play a key role in the programmes of Ipswich 102 and will be the core element of the station’s speech output. The station will employ a News Editor and two full-time journalists, plus a budget is allocated for freelance staff to cover weekends, holidays and special events. On weekdays, staff will work these hours: Time Band 05:30 – 13:30 Staff Journalist 1 11:00 – 19:00 Journalist 2 09:00 – 17:00 News Editor Page 38
  40. 40. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy Weekday news bulletins will be scheduled according to the pattern outlined below. Because daytime bulletins from 0630 to 1900 are locally compiled and read, the flexibility exists to extend their length when there are important, breaking news stories: Time Bulletin Type 00:00 – 05:00 06:00 06:30 07:00 07:30 08:00 08:30 09:00 09:30 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 16:30 17:00 17:30 18:00 18:30 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00 National National Headlines Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Headlines / Sport Nat/Local Mix National National National National Source Duration (mins) IRN IRN Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Local IRN IRN IRN IRN 3 3 1 5-6 1 5-6 1 5-6 1 4 4 4 5-6 4 4 5-6 1 5-6 1 5-6 4 4 3 3 3 3 Weekends will be covered by staff working an additional shift: Time Band Sat 07:30 – 12:00 Staff 1 Journalist - Rotational Shift Sun 08:30 – 13:00 1 Journalist - Rotational Shift Page 39
  41. 41. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy Locally compiled and read news bulletins will be broadcast 0800 to 1200 on Saturday and 0900 to 1300 on Sunday: Time Saturday Bulletin Type Source Duration (Mins) 08:00 08:30 09:00 09:30 10:00 11:00 12:00 Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Headlines Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Local Local Local Local Local Local Local 4 1 4 1 4-5 4-5 4-5 Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix National Local Local Local Local Local IRN 4 4 4-5 4-5 4-5 2 Sunday 09:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 All Other The market research commissioned by the Board confirmed the paramount importance of reliable, informative, up-to-the minute news to the people of Ipswich (see above). While not ignoring the wider regional, national and international perspective, it is essential that Ipswich 102’s news coverage be focused on the Ipswich area. The people who live in the town are fiercely proud of it and have an active interest in what goes on there. Sports Sports coverage will be a vital and integral part of the Ipswich 102 programme schedule. The station will cover Ipswich Town Football Club and Ipswich Witches Speedway Team fixtures, as well as news of local and junior sports clubs. Time Bulletin Type Source 07:35 08:35 12:35 13:35 16:35 17:35 18:30 Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Time Saturday Bulletin Type 08:35 09:35 Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Local Local 3 3 Nat/Local Mix Nat/Local Mix Local Local 3 3 Local Local Local Local Local Local Local Source Duration (Mins) 2 2 3 3 2 2 4 Duration (mins) Sunday 09:30 12:30 Page 40
  42. 42. Section 105(b) and (c): Catering for Tastes and Interests And Broadening Choice 4. Programming Philosophy Weekday Programmes Throughout the day, news and information will provide the foundations and the supporting structure to a programme schedule that listeners will find both entertaining and engaging. Ipswich 102 will be fun without being trivial, but serious when it needs to be, balancing lightness of touch with consistent credibility. A dynamic and lively breakfast show will appeal to those who are busy and on the move, with news and feature content clearly setting the agenda for the day in Ipswich. Other essential information, such as travel news, weather, coastal forecasts and conditions, time-checks and sports updates will also be key ingredients, and the show will include music, competitions and listener involvement. The post-breakfast sequence, taking the listener from mid-morning to early afternoon, will be more relaxed in style, but without losing the sharpness of focus on local issues that are clearly of interest to the target audience. Listener involvement will be key at this time of day, sitting alongside regular input from lifestyle experts and celebrity guests. The mid- to late afternoon sequence will reflect the leisure and cultural aspects of the area, while moving seamlessly into drive-time as a tighter, brisker pace returns to the output. Travel news and information will again assume a significant role at this busy end of the day. Weekend Programmes Evening and weekend programmes will include opportunities for more specialist and specific programming, catering for such diverse interests as sports, arts and specialist music genres. The content of these programmes will not be solely confined to the professional sphere, but will include the extremely active local amateur and semiprofessional scene. Alongside the sports coverage that will be part of an Ipswich 102 weekend, Saturday and Sunday afternoon programming will see the radio station covering major events in the area, participating where appropriate, and taking a flavour of Ipswich life to those listening but unable to be there themselves. On Sunday morning, issues concerning faith, ethics and morality will be discussed on the breakfast show, as Ipswich 102 reports on the many activities of local religious groups. Throughout the year, promoting a series of carefully targeted campaigns, Ipswich 102 will work with CSV Media to prompt interest in a variety of community groups, as well as active citizenship and civic renewal. Ipswich 102 presenters will have excellent local knowledge and links with local people and organisations. A number of key presenters have already been identified and, for contractual reasons, they are named in confidential Appendix 7 attached to this application. They will know about the issues they are discussing, with an instinctive feel for the interests of the target audience, and they will be wholly familiar with the music they play. Within the clearly defined parameters of the station’s music policy, the presenters will also have some freedom to select the songs they play and to actively contribute to the composition of the station playlist. Page 41

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