A bill recently passed by the Norwegian Parliament outlining the plan for the digitalisation of radio broadcasting and the closing down of analogue FM broadcasting in Norway. To facilitate the digital transition, the bill makes it possible for existing Norwegian national commercial radio broadcasters to prolong their licenses from 2014 until the cessation of FM broadcasting, which is due to take place in 2017. Thereafter, all radio will be broadcast digitally and no licenses will be required. Existing analogue license holders that prolong their licenses will be required to participate in the expansion of the existing commercial digital radio networks to cover 90% of the Norwegian population.
P4 Radio Hele Norge is Norway’s leading commercial radio network, with a daily reach of over 1.1 million listeners and a 32.5% audience share amongst 20 to 50 year olds in the first quarter of 2011. P4 Radio Hele Norge also owns and operates the P5 local city network in Norway, which is broadcast in the cities of Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Stavanger and reaches a total potential audience of two million listeners. P4 Radio Hele Norge’s total revenues grew by 25% in 2010.
Hans-Holger Albrecht, President and CEO of MTG, commented: “P4 Radio is the leading commercial radio operator in Norway, one of the largest commercial media in Norway by reach. We are pleased to have the opportunity to extend our broadcasting license and to play a leading role part in the transition to DAB digital radio broadcasting in Norway. Radio is a major and growing advertising medium in Norway, and the digitalisation process will only accelerate this development.”