Prendeville helps push Red to the top

Broadcaster Neil Prendeville has regained his crown as Cork’s top radio talk show host and helped RedFM leapfrog its main rival to become the city’s most listened-to radio station

In the latest battle in the Cork radio wars, RedFM and Cork’s 96FM and 103FM quoted differently from the latest JNLR/IPSOS/MRBI figures published last night.

96FM and C103 chief executive Kieran McGeary said the 12-month figures show they were the most listened-to radio operation in Cork in that time, and combined, they had a listened-to-yesterday audience of 165,000 daily and 245,000 weekly.

“The industry currency is the 12-month book, which is what everyone uses,” he said. “We’ve a book that shows consistent and robust performance by our stations. We always strive to improve. We will continue do to that, we never sit back on our laurels.”

However, RedFM quoted the JNLR trend figures from January to June 2015, which shows it attracted 34,000 new listeners compared to the previous six months to give it a market share of 24.9% compared to 96FM’s 18.9%.

RedFM’s chief executive Diarmuid O’Leary said since the start of this year, the station now has a weekly reach of 195,000 listeners weekly and 146,000 listeners daily — 37,000 more than 96FM’s daily figure for the same period.

He said the six-month figures also show that Mr Prendeville now has 85,000 listeners every weekday morning, while PJ Coogan, who took over his slot on 96FM, now has 73,000 listeners, down from around 116,000 before Mr Prendeville’s departure.

Since January, RedFM’s programme director and breakfast show presenter, KC, has increased his listenership to 52,000, putting him 3,000 ahead of his 96FM rival, Nick Richards.

However, Mr McGeary said he was not going to get in to a slagging match with RedFM over their use of the six-month figures, reiterating that the 12-month figures are the industry norm.

Mr Prendeville said the growth in RedFM’s audience was incredible.

“It was a very steep mountain to climb but we got there. We’ve gone from fifth to first in the Cork market in 15 months,” he said. “ It’s testament to the staff, my team but most importantly the good people of Cork who made the switch with us.”

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