Thursday 23 May 2013

No farewell to FM in Denmark

DAB opens for commercial radio
Digital radio listening in Denmark has grown. However, an expert warns that the progress is too slow and there will be no farewell to FM 2019. Figures show that 16 % av all public service radio listening is digital i.e. DAB and Internet. Commercial radio on DAB is still unmeasurable.

Politicians have stated that an FM "switch-of" can begin 2018 if digital listening is more than 50 % - and this must include car radios. But this is unrealistic according to the media expert Per Jauert at Aarhus University. He says that the problem with DAB in cars is not yet solved and warns for recklessly opening new DAB radio stations in order to compete with existing FM channels.

The government is now planning to give concessions for national commercial radio on DAB Block 2. To get such a concession you must adhere to set criterias in a "beauty contest" and of course pay hefty annual fees.

One criteria is the use of studio hosts and also that you have stand-alone program output which is not broadcast in parallell on FM. Also no regional or local broadcasts.

Concession fee is 10,6-13,4 million euro per year on an annual revenue more than 27 million euro.  For a concession which is 1/8 of a multiplex you will pay 67.100 euro annually for transmission costs ta start with. After five years you will pay 335.500 euro per year.

The population of Denmark is 5,5 million.