New ra­dio sta­tions launched by ARN and Shock Mid­dle East

Campaign Middle East - - NEWS - By Austyn Al­li­son

Dubai-based Ara­bian Ra­dio Net­work has launched two new dig­i­tal-only ra­dio sta­tions, while an in­de­pen­dent dance sta­tion has launched in Dubai.

ARN’s Al Khalee­jiya Clas­sic will play tracks from GCC mu­si­cians of the 1980s and 1990s. And Al Ara­biya Cas­sette will also have a retro feel, broad­cast­ing Ara­bic hits from the 1960s to the 1990s.

The two new sta­tions are brand ex­ten­sions of ex­ist­ing ARN prop­er­ties Al Khalee­jiya 100.9 and Al Ara­biya 99. They will be avail­able through those sta­tions’ smart­phone apps.

ARN has nine ter­res­trial sta­tions, and last May launched an­other seven dig­i­tal-only sta­tions to com­ple­ment its English, Hindi and Malay­alam chan­nels. Steve Smith, chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer at ARN, says th­ese served to drive up time spent lis­ten­ing (TSL) to the ARN net­work. Not only were au­di­ences lis­ten­ing through their apps, of­ten with their phones linked to car stereos, but fol­low­ing the launch lis­ten­er­ship on ter­res­trial sta­tions has risen too.

Smith told jour­nal­ists he was ex­pect­ing up­take across the new Ara­bic chan­nels to be higher than the net­work had seen from its pre­vi­ous dig­i­tal-only launches. The chan­nels will ap­peal to an older, more nos­tal­gic au­di­ence, and with songs that of­ten last 10-12 min­utes, the tracks the dig­i­tal chan­nels play won’t have to be cut down to ac­com­mo­date com­mer­cial breaks.

The dig­i­tal sta­tions will carry ad­ver­tis­ing but, said Smith, their main role is to drive up TSL and keep lis­ten­ers within ARN’s net­work. “We want to stretch [lis­ten­ers],” he said. “To keep them within our ecosys­tem.”

Mean­while, a new, in­de­pen­dent ra­dio sta­tion has launched in Dubai. Dance 97.8FM claims to be the UAE’s first dance sta­tion. It has been launched by Theo Makris and Digy Tay­lor. Makris founded Shock Mid­dle East, the com­pany be­hind the sta­tion, in 2014. Tay­lor Joined Shock in May 2015. For 10 years be­fore that he had worked with Gulf News Broad­cast­ing, pre­sent­ing Drive Time on Ra­dio 2 for six years be­fore mov­ing into man­age­ment.

Gulf News Broad­cast­ing closed its ra­dio op­er­a­tions last year.

Old-school: ARN’s sta­tions will play Ara­bic clas­sics

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UAE

© PressReader. All rights reserved.