Radio Broadcasting in the UK Industry Market Research Report now updated by IBISWorld

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Radio broadcasters in the UK are facing numerous challenges, the foremost being the splintering of media into a greater number of fragments. As increasing amounts of content are delivered via highly customisable online avenues, the broadcast nature of radio has been perceived by some as a liability. The ongoing switch from analog to digital radio broadcasting is partly a response to this, and the increasing array of channels available via the digital platform will help the industry pull through this transition. The BBC is the most significant player in the industry, accounting for over half of total listening hours across Great Britain. Over the five years through 2012-13, industry revenue is estimated to contract at an annualised rate of 2.2% to total £1.2 billion. The decline of industry revenue was accelerated by recessions in the UK and many other parts of the world, during which advertising expenditure became considerably more difficult for radio broadcasters to attract. Industry revenue will rise by 1.3% in 2012-13, boosted by stronger advertising expenditure in the wake of the Olympics, yet will return to negligible growth (0.4%) in 2013-14. In the next five years, the internet will continue to shape the fortunes of the industry. IBISWorld forecasts that industry revenue will continue to fall over the next five years to 2017-18. For these reasons, industry research firm IBISWorld has updated its report on the Radio Broadcasting industry.

IBISWorld Market Research

IBISWorld Market Research

Revenue is declining as the industry adapts to the digital landscape

Radio broadcasters in the UK are facing numerous challenges, the foremost being the splintering of media into a greater number of fragments. As increasing amounts of content are delivered via highly customisable online avenues, the broadcast nature of radio has been perceived by some as a liability. According to IBISWorld industry analyst Arna Richardson, “the ongoing switch from analog to digital radio broadcasting is partly a response to this, and the increasing array of channels available via the digital platform will help the industry pull through this transition”. The BBC is the most significant player in the industry, accounting for over half of total listening hours across Great Britain.

Over the five years through 2012-13, industry revenue is estimated to contract at an annualised rate of 2.2% to total £1.2 billion. The decline of industry revenue was accelerated by recessions in the UK and many other parts of the world, during which advertising expenditure became considerably more difficult for radio broadcasters to attract. Richardson adds, “employment, establishments and wages have all trended downwards over the past five years, affected by technology improvements and the fragmentation of the media landscape, which have reduced the prominence of radio”. Industry revenue will rise by 1.3% in 2012-13, boosted by stronger advertising expenditure in the wake of the Olympics, yet will return to negligible growth (0.4%) in 2013-14. In the next five years, the internet will continue to shape the fortunes of the industry. The greater geographical reach of online radio broadcasting will enable the creation of new niche broadcasters. At the same time, the industry will continue its gradual transition of becoming an 'audio' industry. IBISWorld forecasts that industry revenue will continue to fall over the next five years to 2017-18.

As the largest industry player is a public broadcaster, it is somewhat misleading to look at market share concentration in terms of the revenue share of the four largest players in the industry. A more meaningful measure for radio broadcasters is the proportion of the total audience that is shared by the four largest broadcasters, which is high. While there are many community and small commercial broadcasters across the UK, the BBC, along with multi-station broadcasting organisations Global Radio and Bauer Media, account for the vast majority of radio listeners. IBISWorld estimates that in 2012-13, the three largest players in the industry will represent just over 80% of the total radio audience, with the BBC alone accounting for over half of total audience numbers.

For more information on the Radio Broadcasting industry, including latest industry trends, statistics, analysis and market share information, purchase the full report from IBISWorld, the nation’s largest publisher of industry research.

IBISWorld industry Report Key Topics

Participants in this industry broadcast and transmit radio programmes to listeners, via analog radio, digital radio, the internet, or cable or satellite systems.
Industry Performance
Executive Summary
Key External Drivers
Current Performance
Industry Outlook
Industry Life Cycle
Products & Markets
Supply Chain
Products & Services
Major Markets
Globalisation & Trade
Business Locations
Competitive Landscape
Market Share Concentration
Key Success Factors
Cost Structure Benchmarks
Barriers to Entry
Major Companies
Operating Conditions
Capital Intensity
Key Statistics
Industry Data
Annual Change
Key Ratios

About IBISWorld
Recognised as the nation’s most trusted independent source of industry and market research, IBISWorld offers a comprehensive database of unique information and analysis on many UK industries. With an extensive online portfolio, valued for its depth and scope, the company equips clients with the insight necessary to make better business decisions. Headquartered in London, IBISWorld serves a range of business, professional service and government organisations through more than 10 locations worldwide. For more information, visit http://www.ibisworld.co.uk or call (020) 3008 6568.

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Gavin Smith
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