Class FM goes off air, heads online
Class FM, Hungary’s most popular commercial radio channel, lost its analog signal on Saturday, and has gone silent, or more precisely will continue operating online, according to reports. Its reach is expected to drop dramatically from the 2.4 million listeners measured during the fall.
The Media Council of Hungaryʼs National Media and Infocommunications Authority (NMHH) earlier refused the request of national commercial radio station Class FM to renew its license, and held a new tender for the frequency, which has not been won by Class FM.
It is unclear where the 2.4 million listeners will go now that Class FM has lost its analog signal, index.hu reports. The news portal noted that rivals Music FM and Sláger FM would be happy to fish for some of these listeners for themselves as their listeners are much fewer in number, at around 685,000 and 351,000, respectively. According to index.hu, as far as state-owned radios are concerned, Kossuth Radio has 1.3 million listeners, Petőfi 835,000, and Dankó 332,000.
Sláger Rádio Zrt. announced at a press conference in May that it had purchased ownership of Class FM by buying the station’s owner, Advenio Zrt. The move apparently took the station out of the hands of ownership that had recently become less government-friendly, and was seen by many observers as part of a continuing split between formerly pro-government media oligarch Lajos Simicska and Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.
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