Iconic Chch Radio Station RDU's Future Secured
Monday, November 27, 2006
Iconic Chch Radio Station RDU's Long Term Future Secured
The University of Canterbury Students’ Association (‘UCSA’) has entered into an agreement that secures RDU’s long term future. A newly formed company, RDU98.5FM Ltd, has agreed to sub-licence the frequency from the UCSA. This outcome is a very positive one for the students and all of the stakeholders in RDU.
The responsibility for RDU98.5FM will remain with station manager Andrew Meier and the sales team of James Meharry and Karyn South.
“RDU will continue to be what it is and what it always has been – intelligent, vibrant, energetic, independent broadcaster in Christchurch. The music, the hosts, the culture will stay exactly the same,” Meier said. “We will remain dedicated and focused on the student audience that gave birth to the station 30 years ago, as well as all our other listeners.”
The new operators will take over the day-to-day running of the station from February 1, 2007.
UCSA President Warren Poh said this decision had come after many years of having to subsidise the station and uncertainty over RDU’s future.
“The UCSA has paid a substantial amount every year to keep RDU going,” Poh said. “We had to look at this from a long term perspective.”
The station will now pay a small annual sum to the UCSA for the broadcast sub-licence.
“UCSA is delighted that RDU’s new operators come from within RDU ranks. They bring a wealth of radio and promotional experience to RDU as well as an understanding of the station’s core values and its community,” Poh said.
“The new arrangement will mean a lot more access to RDU by the student body and more presence of RDU at student events.”
Poh said the question of consultation with the student body had been a difficult one, but the commercial sensitivity of the arrangement had made it impossible.
“The public discussion that would have occurred after asking our student body what they thought about it would have severely damaged the business and its reputation.” he said.
“There is nothing in our constitution or anything else that says we have to discuss this sort of thing with the student body. After much deliberation, an overwhelming majority of the executive who were voted in to make decisions in the best interests of the student body were in complete support of this solution.” Poh said.
“A succession of UCSA executives have been discussing this issue for a number of years and there’s been plenty of people who’ve had all the information. We’ve never had any thing to hide. This is definitely in the best interests of the student body.”