Clare FM confirms proposed acquisition by Radio Kerry

Clare FM confirms proposed acquisition by Radio Kerry

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Award winning radio station Clare FM, and its sister station Tipp FM, are set to the sold to Radio Kerry.

The Board of Clare Community Radio Holdings Ltd., operators of Clare FM and owners of a controlling interest in Tipp FM, has approved an offer from Radio Kerry Holdings to acquire the two stations.

The deal, for an undisclosed sum, follows the acquisition by Clare Community Radio Holdings of a significant majority stake in Tipp FM in 2013.

Clare FM, which was established in 1989, was among the first wave of local stations to receive a broadcast licence from the then Independent Radio and Television Commission (now the BAI – Broadcasting Authority of Ireland).

Over the past three decades, Clare FM established itself as a leader in local radio and has been the recipient of major broadcasting awards on national and international stages. Clare FM and Tipp FM together employ 45 full-time and 30 part-time staff.

Photo: © Pat Flynn 2017

Commenting on the merger, Mr Liam O’Shea, Managing Director of Clare FM and Tipp FM and a major shareholder in both stations, said: “The Board of Clare FM is recommending acceptance of the offer to their shareholders. Both offers are subject to shareholder and regulatory approval.”

“We feel that, in a changing media environment, it will provide the necessary stability to grow our already successful stations into the future as part of a dynamic broadcasting entity. Key benefits of this deal are that it will underline a commitment to local radio, benefit our staff and our listeners,” Mr O’Shea added.

Clare FM and Tipp FM Managing Director Liam O’Shea

Radio Kerry, named Ireland’s Local Radio Station of the Year on five occasions, was established in 1990 and also owns Shannonside and Northern Sound, which broadcasts to Longford, Roscommon, Leitrim, Cavan and Monaghan.

CEO of Radio Kerry, Paul Byrne said: “The decision is being made to be proactively involved in the future development of the radio and media industry in Ireland and to create new opportunities for staff, advertisers and listeners.”

Also commenting the merger, Radio Kerry Chairman, Tim O Keeffe said: “The shareholders and management team at Radio Kerry have common objectives as Clare FM and Tipp FM in protecting and promoting the local radio sector. It is the belief of all involved that this would strengthen and secure the future of all stations.”

The Stations:

Radio Kerry was established in 1990 and is headquartered in Tralee. It also owns Shannonside and Northern Sound Radio Stations- which broadcast to Longford, Roscommon, Leitrim, Cavan and Monaghan. Radio Kerry has been named Irelands Local Radio Station of the Year on five occasions.

Clare FM was established in 1989 and was among the first wave of local stations to receive a broadcast licence. Over subsequent years, Clare FM established itself as a leader in local radio and has been the recipient of major broadcasting awards on National, International and World stages.

Tipp FM has its head office in Clonmel with an additional studio in Nenagh. It employs twenty-two full time and fifteen part time staff.  Following its initial broadcast licence in 1989, it was granted a licence in 2003 to cover the whole of the County and this year has been the recipient of a Media Innovation Award for the second year in a row.

 

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Chief Reporter Pat Flynn has worked as a journalist for almost 30 years. His career began during the late 1980s when, like many aspiring radio presenters of the time, he worked for local pirate radio stations in Clare and Limerick. Pat joined Clare FM in 1990 where he worked as researcher initially and later presented several different programmes including the station's flagship current affairs programme. He was also the station's News Editor and Deputy Controller of Programmes. Despite leaving in 2003 to pursue a career as a freelance journalist, he continues to work with the station to this day. As well as being the Clare Herald’s Chief Reporter Pat is also freelance journalist and broadcaster, contributing to Ireland’s national newspapers and is a regular contributor to national broadcasters.

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