Communications infrastructure and media services company Arqiva has announced that it is investing 6 million pounds to launch four new local multiplexes, which will bring digital radio to listeners in England. The company is working with the BBC, Global Radio and Oxford’s JACKfm.
The project will launch in phases, beginning with Oxfordshire the third week of December, followed by Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Northamptonshire and Derby.
According to the release, most listeners in these areas already have access to digital radio for national stations, as provided by commercial radio and the BBC, but industry regulator Ofcom’s research indicates that consumers want local stations too.
“Arqiva’s investment in the new digital radio multiplexes will deliver more choice and new radio services to over 1.5 million people and present smaller radio stations with the opportunity to get on air more quickly, pushing local content and local talent to the forefront,” said Paul Eaton, director of digital radio at Arqiva. “Working with the BBC and Global Radio gives Arqiva the opportunity to stimulate the digital radio market by demonstrating our commitment to the platform, driving improvements in coverage and increasing listening.”