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The latest Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures shows that Ireland’s love affair with independent radio is as strong as ever.

64.1% of the listening population (2.452 million people) continue to tune in to independent radio on a daily basis in the key 7am to 7pm slot.

Expressing satisfaction with the figures, Willie O’Reilly, chairman of the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland said; “Independent radio is consistently winning and retaining a majority share of Irish radio listeners. Our strength is the diversity of our offering which reflects the communities in which we are based and broadcast.

“RTÉ can be perceived as being ‘Dublin centric’ and out of touch with its audiences. Our broadcasters remain extremely close to their listeners and this shows in the loyalty of audiences we retain.

“The economic and social contribution of the independent broadcasting sector cannot be underestimated and in particular the employment supported. 1500 people are working in independent broadcasting in Ireland.

“2009 has been a very significant year for radio in Ireland. The most wide ranging reform in broadcasting legislation this century was passed by Dáil Éireann; we saw 2 new radio stations come on air, adding to the vibrancy of our sector and we had the appointment of a Chair to the new Broadcasting Authority.

“On the downside, the fall in advertising revenues as a result of the economic downturn was challenging for all independent broadcasters. Unlike RTÉ which has its annual licence fee windfall, commercial revenues are the lifeblood of independent radio. Many radio stations addressed this challenge in innovative ways and, as a result we minimised redundancies in the sector.

“I am confident that 2010 will be a year of continued growth for independent broadcasting in Ireland and we will continue to retain significant share of the listenership. We look forward to working with the new Broadcasting Authority to ensure solid support for the future of independent radio in Ireland”.

-Ends-

Further information:
Lisa Ni Choisdealbha, Independent Broadcasters of Ireland: 087-2038956
Laurie Mannix MKC Communications: (01) 7038600

About the Independent Broadcasters of Ireland
The Independent Broadcasters of Ireland (IBI) is the representative body for Ireland’s independent commercial radio broadcasters. The mission of the IBI is to champion the agenda of independent broadcasters in Ireland and to be a distinct and coherent national voice in the ongoing campaign for competitive equality across the sector.

The independent voice of Ireland, 64.1% of the population tune into independent radio on a daily basis. This translates into weekday figures of 2.452 million listeners. With more than 1500 people employed in the sector, independent broadcasters make a significant economic, social and cultural contribution to the Irish economy. The IBI represents 2 national radio stations, 4 regional radio stations and 27 local radio stations. For more information please visit: www.ibireland.ie