In an interview with The Voice co-founder of Choice FM Patrick Berry has replied to those who say Choice FM’s demise was signalled in the day he and his business partner Neil Kenlock sold the station to Capital/Global Radio almost a decade ago.
“The people that said we sold out don’t understand that you can’t keep a radio station fuelled on love alone. The local advertisers we had were not enough alone to keep it going. That’s what forced the sale.”
“I feel proud of what Choice achieved, and would have liked it to have lasted forever. It opened doors for black people in many different areas. Now that it is no more those doors will start closing again.
“When you don’t squeak, you don’t get oiled. Because Choice was there squeaking, black people could get jobs in the industry other than in the canteen or as security. I fear those opportunities may now slip and slide away.”
In response to Berry’s reasons for selling the station he co-founded in 1990, an industry insider (who wishes to remain nameless) summed up my own thoughts regarding the sale of Choice FM back in 2004
The insider said:
“I understand running a business is tough. Finding the balance between profitability, remaining relevant with your target market and business growth can sometimes cancel each other out. However, if due care was shown and embedded around demonstrating a robust business strategy, good governance and a commitment to discovering and supporting emerging talent from the African and African Caribbean communities I doubt advertising revenue would have dwindled. The likes of Capital would not have come knocking unless the business was viable and had future profitability.
Showing concern now over the actions of who you sold it to, knowing they were a station that had no real understanding of the communities it serves or the music and culture it distributes is too late in the day and the biggest factor as to why Choice FM is no more.”
For those of you who might have missed the news, last Monday Choice FM was officially put out to pasture along with a succession of popular radio personalities (DJ 279, Daddy Ernie, Natti B, Martin Jay, Dave P and DJ KC), and Capital XTRA was born.
It should also be noted that Choice veteran DJ Jigs resigned the following day.
Your thoughts please….
Categories: UK News