Hoping to encourage more stations to participate in the HD Radio rollout, Ibiquity Digital says it has put an incentive program in place.
The company has said it’s been working on a way to ease the cost burden for small stations. It now has launched a program it says will give smaller-market and independent operators a break on licensing fees. Other owners may also qualify under certain stipulations.
Under the program, it said, radio groups can cap their license fees at $10,000 per station. Fees are due to rise to $15,000 this July. Ibiquity says the program also allows participating groups to lock in the lower license fee on future station acquisitions.
Any radio broadcast group not currently licensed under a conversion incentive program would have its primary audio license fees capped at $10,000 per station.
“The top 20 radio broadcast groups own just 20% of the AM and FM stations in the U.S., which means the overwhelming majority of the nation’s radio stations are owned by small groups and independents,” said Ron Davis, chairman of the Small Market Operators Caucus in the announcement from Ibiquity. He called the program “an especially good fit for small, independent broadcasters.”
The discount applies to all group stations, pending the execution of a 2007 License Commitment Agreement between the group owner and Ibiquity by Sept. 30 of this year. The LCA can be obtained online or by sending e-mail to broadcaster@iBiquity.com.