Global Picture: Radio One Grows Revenue by 72 Percent



So here we are, the first month of 2009 is already coming to a close and everyone is practically holding their breath waiting to see what the combination of economic conditions and a new Presidential Administration will have upon our industry.

With that in mind. it’s time for another one of my regular looks at radio outside of our borders. In this case, let’s glance at some positive news just in from India.

Via Exchange4 Media:

Amid the slowdown gloom Radio One, the joint venture between Mid-Day Multimedia and BBC Worldwide, has something to cheer about. The FM player has reported a 72 per cent growth in revenues for the period April to December 2008 as it declared its Q3 results on January 20, 2009.

Once again, this proves that a global perspective is important. As the global economy continues its tailspin, cases like this can provide not only inspiration but also ideas on how to ride out the financial storm and maintain profitability. Granted, that is not always the case, but we can often re-contextualize the approach of others and find useful techniques that we can use here in the US.

So, how have they achieved this?

Commenting on the Q3 results, Vineet Singh Hukmani, CEO, Radio One, said, “Despite a great H1 and the subsequent slowdown in Q3 in the industry this year, we have maintained our performance from Q2 to Q3, essentially due to focus on targeted listenership, efficiency pricing and stringent cost control. Our new stations – Ahmedabad, Pune and Kolkata – operate efficiently with an average of less than 14 people each, and our all India costs are lower than the industry average by 39 per cent. Our all India headcount in seven cities is 144 people against the industry average of 235-250 people across seven metro cities. Our marketing and advertising costs are not even 20 per cent of the industry average.”

Interesting food for thought, isn’t it? Especially when you look at the order in which these factors are presented. Just as with the ongoing push into the mobile arena, we once again see “targeted listenership” at the forefront of the list.

Radio One is a joint venture between Mid-Day Multimedia and BBC Worldwide which operates in seven cities: Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Pune, Ahmedabad, and Kolkata (which was only added to the roster in December of ’08).

Photo courtesy of Swami Stream, used under its Creative Commons license


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