Radio station on course to break even in 2011 despite losses of nearly €1m

LIMERICK-based radio station Spin South-West remains on course to break even by the end of 2011 despite its latest set of accounts showing a loss of nearly €1 million.

The station’s accounts show a loss of €967,000 for 2008, broadly similar to losses made in the previous year, but an improvement in that the station only operated for six months in 2007.

Station chief Aevann Upton said that the business remains “robust” despite the economic downturn and continues to be the most popular station in the region for its target audience of 15- to 34-year-olds.

The station is the sister channel of Dublin’s Spin 1038. Both are owned by Denis O’Brien’s Communicorp group and the Raheen-based version has additional financial backing from the likes of former Ireland rugby captain Keith Wood and Kerry businessman Jerry Kennelly.

“Despite the very difficult year for the broadcast industry across Ireland, we are quite upbeat for SPIN South-West, as we build a sustainable and popular youth radio station. Our five-year business plan (2007 to 2011) was drawn up in much more buoyant economic circumstances than we have now, but we are happy to say that we remain on target to break even in year five as planned,” Ms Upton added.

Revenue for the last six months of 2008 also doubled the amount generated in the same period of 2007.

Ms Upton added: “This is down to the fact that SPIN South-West has been the most successfully launched youth station in Ireland and listenership continues to increase across the board. We are currently the most listened-to station in the south-west for 15- to 34-year-olds, ahead of national stations 2FM and Today FM, and have also managed to grow our adult audience to 135,000. This growth has strengthened our appeal to advertisers, which is essential in the downturn.

“Overall, our robust listenership and economic performance ensures that we are on course to not alone deliver on targets set out in our business plan, but to capitalise on improving economic conditions as the economy rebounds.”


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