News UK recently mounted a successful £220m takeover of Wireless Group, the parent company of Premier League radio broadcaster talkSPORT. They pointed to cross-selling platform opportunities and a chance to align its newspapers with a digital audience as reasons for the acquisition.
As newspapers continue to suffer steep declines in circulation and readership, the digital news industry is increasingly competitive due to the likes of BuzzFeed and Twitter amongst others. As such, it is understandable that News UK would want to associate themselves with a radio broadcaster who can boast over 3.1 million weekly listeners on talkSPORT alone.
Something else not to be ignored is that talkSPORT recently won three out of eight live Premier League audio packages. By purchasing Wireless Group, it allows Rupert Murdoch’s group to directly challenge the BBC for share, with Radio 5 Live the other main broadcaster of live sport and football.
Soon after news of the acquisition broke, in an immediate move, presenter Colin Murray announced he is leaving the station due to his views on News UK paper, The Sun.
All Response Media Viewpoint
Whilst these acquisitions usually take time to come into recognisable action, we’re looking forward to seeing what News UK can offer here, particularly in relation to cross-platform advertising opportunities. Both The Sun and The Times, combined with talkSPORT and talkSPORT2 will offer significant reach against an in-demand audience.
All have previously offered good value access to a male 18-44 audience that can be very expensive to reach on TV; we are hoping that this continues but with increased opportunities for boosting campaigns through digital, print and broadcast media combined.