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Radio One Kolkata adopts Hindi retro route

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | April 10, 2012
The Kolkata station of Radio One will now play Hindi retro music through the day.

In its effort to sound different from the other radio stations in Kolkata, Radio One 94.3 FM has taken to the Hindi retro route. From now onwards, it will play Hindi retro music, that is, music mainly from '70s and '80s Bollywood films, through the day.

Vineet Singh Hukmani

Vineet Singh Hukmani, managing director, Radio One, in an official communiqué, says, "As we have maintained, we will always be 'away from the herd' and yet reach a sizeable audience in every city we play in. Kolkata is a market where there is tremendous appreciation of the 'heritage of Hindi retro' both in mature educated listeners and discerning advertisers looking to reach a quality conscious audience."

"We have never been interested only in reach. We have always been interested in giving our advertisers the impact they need within a sizeable but well profiled audience. This change will bring us very close to almost two million listeners in Kolkata. This market being a high TSL (time spent listening) market will help us build tremendous loyalty," adds Hukmani.

The change in the music content is based on a research conducted by the radio channel. The research revealed that most listeners in Kolkata were exposed to a mixture of too many kinds of music, which led to all radio stations sounding the same. Moreover, the research stressed on how listeners complained that there was no maturity in the spoken content, which was mainly driven by the radio jockeys.

Anil Machado, national programming head, Radio One, explains, "It is about time that format radio replaces generic radio in the Kolkata market. The city's rich sense of heritage and the fact that some of the best Hindi music has roots in Kolkata helped us reach this decision to be different and pure. The average Kolkata listener expressed displeasure over the lack of intelligence, which we have corrected. Listeners also complained of too much jock talk in all stations in the 12 noon-4pm time band, resulting in a sharp drop of average number of songs per hour in that band."

The change comes close on the heels of the radio channel's decision to play 100 per cent Hindi music in Bengaluru - a market mainly dominated by Kannada music, and international music in Mumbai and Delhi.

For the record, Radio One is a joint venture between Next Media Works and BBC Worldwide. Currently, it operates seven radio stations in Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai, Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Pune.

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