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Radio Equipment Purchases to Decline This Year

Consulting firm says expected 16% drop is ‘moderate’ in light of economic situation

A consulting firm predicts a 16% decline in global broadcast radio equipment purchasing in 2009 but says, all things considered, this drop seems moderate particularly compared to trends in TV.

DIS Consulting Corp. — which is also a research partner of the NAB Show, which “partly inspired” this survey — issued a market research report, “Radio Equipment World 2008.” The company said it sought to set up benchmarks in major categories of radio-related equipment.

“The survey results … were gathered entirely from chief engineers and other titles at radio stations around the world, this past fall. In each of the 11 product categories, respondents reported what they owned, bought last year and planned to purchase this year, by type, by brand and in terms of average prices or values,” DIS stated in its summary.

“The 11 product genres included portable recording systems, studio recording systems, audio recording media, large studio mixers and consoles, on-air mixers and consoles, microphones, speakers/monitors, amplifiers, digital audio workstations, and radio transmitters.”

The findings, it said, “reflected both a technology transition in the radio market and the impact of the global economic crisis now underway. Overall, among the 11 categories studied, a 16% decline was seen between dollars spent on equipment purchases in 2008 and those purchases planned in 2009. Of the previously mentioned product genres, only portable recording systems were expected to see a modest increase in 2009.”

CEO Douglas I. Sheer stated in the announcement: “Considering the difficult economy and the major shifts away from terrestrial over-the-air radio to Web-based and satellite based alternatives, the slide in dollars seems moderate. This is especially true when we look at parallel results on the television side this year.”