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    India’s 94.3 Radio One, the brand owned by Next Radio Ltd, began its 11th year celebrations from Sept 4 to peak on Sept 18 - the day of the anniversary.

    The celebrations in its 7 cities of operation will continue till the end of October 2018.

    The 11th anniversary of the network will see the launch of its unique audience tracker called the International Indian Annual Monitor report.

    This report tracks ‘brand/category preference’ behaviour of its 4.2 million upscale listeners (as per IRS) in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore – the largest media markets .

    It has a foreword by respected industry stalwarts – Sam Balsara, Sunil Lulla, Ashish Pherwani, Leo Puri, Madhu Dutta, Sulina Menon and Subhodip Pal.

    This pioneering report was created with queries pertaining to brands/categories that were designed as ‘help questions’ and not research. These 'help questions' were asked by Radio One RJs on its stations and its 1.3 million fans on facebook. The questions sought genuine listener advice and listeners helped their favourite RJs in making real life product / brand choices. Extensive responses have been tabulated in the report to provide valuable insights for future content creation & improving brand conversation impact for advertisers, exclusively within this upscale audience of 94.3 Radio One. 

    The report can be accessed at ­­­­­­­

    “The International Indian Annual Monitor, a first for any media company in India, directly tracks our upscale audience consistently &  accurately to build enhanced value for our listeners & advertisers in the digital age,”  said Vineet Singh Hukmani, MD & CEO Next Radio Ltd, who also completes 11 years with the company on Sept 18th.

    The theme for the elebration is ‘Whatever It Takes’, which has been expressed in a song performed by the company’s in-house band of the company .

    The station’s sound design is also being refreshed. Veteran actor Kabir Bedi will be anchoring a new program #OneWon that showcases unique situations that came together during the year to create a winning combination.

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    India's Radio City crowned the winner of the 10th edition of its talent hunt Super Singer in Mumbai on Sunday.

    This year, the contest was held in 39 cities across 12 states and the top 5 contenders- Devarshee DasguptaRiyaa SenguptaKanaiya BaraiZameer Darbar and Shruti Sinha battled it out for glory and were judged by acclaimed Music Director Vishal Mishra.

    Devarshee Dasgupta was the winner and was also presented with a cash prize of Rs 100,000.

    Kartik Kalla, Chief Creative Officer, Radio City said: "We are very proud to have bestowed the music industry with path breaking talent who have gone out to outshine themselves in the sphere."

    Music director, producer and singer, Vishal Mishra said: "India has an exceptional talent pool and every part of the country has produced unique and outstanding singers who have made it big in the industry. This wealth of talent also makes it increasingly difficult for aspiring singers to stand out, climb up the ladder and get into the limelight. Radio City's Super Singer, through the years, has been leading the effort to jump start careers of aspiring musicians by giving them a platform to showcase their skills and to take up music as a career." 

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    Facebook owned WhatsApp has launched the second phase of its radio ad campaign in India on Wednesday to stop the spread of misinformation and fake news on its platform by creating awareness among users.

    The company had been pulled up by the government to comply with the law of the land and take "suitable" steps to prevent its misuse after several lynching incidents were linked to the spread of misinformation on the instant messaging platform which has over 200 million monthly active users in India.

    The first phase of the educational campaign was kicked off on August 29 with ads across 46 radio stations of All India Radio (AIR) in states like Bihar, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh.

    The second phase released radio ads across 83 AIR radio stations in Assam, Tripura, West Bengal, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, Orissa and Tamil Nadu. These campaigns will run in eight regional languages -- Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Marathi, Telugu, Oriya and Tamil -- for a 15-day duration.

    The campaign has been designed in an easy to understand format to help user's spot misinformation and further sensitize them about the challenges of fake news and addressing these as a society.

    It gives tips to understand when a message is "forwarded"; check information that seems unbelievable and photos carefully; question information that upsets you and be thoughtful about what you share.

    The company has also roped in New Delhi-based non-profit Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) to create awareness among its users about the need to verify information.

    As part its partnership with WhatsApp, DEF has committed to holding 40 training sessions for community leaders in 10 states across the country where there have been worrisome cases of violence and where there will be state polls before the end of the year.

    "WhatsApp stands committed in its efforts to address these issues jointly with civil society, stakeholders, and the government," the company said.

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    Indian network Radio City’s Mumbai station organized a pride walk following the historical verdict announced last week by the country’s Supreme Court of India on Section 377, decriminalizing sex between consenting adults of the same gender.

    The event called ‘Radio City's 'City Ki Pride - #FreeHugs' took place on Monday, where its breakfast host RJ Archana set out on a pride walk in Bandra East area of Mumbai, with members of the LGBTQA community.

    The members joining in for the walk included famous fashion designer Rohit Verma, Social worker for transgender rights, Vicky Shinde, Mr. Gay India (Runner-Up) 2017, Darshan Mandhana and others from LGBTQA groups like 'Rainbow Tigers' and 'Humsafar'.

    The idea behind the activity was to celebrate the verdict by spreading the message of #LoveisLove and members of the community giving out free hugs to all.

    The contingent held placards saying ‘Love is Love’, ‘Love knows no gender’ and Pride flags while offering Free Hugs.

     RJ Archana said: "We, at Radio City, have always been a propagator of equal rights for all and no discrimination towards any one based on their gender or sexuality. Now that the Supreme Court has accepted them, it is the common people who need to show their love and support to the LGBTQA community, and I am really proud and urge everyone to spread the love and joy to all."

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    Indian network Big FM is back with the 11th edition of 'Green Ganesha' to celebrate the annual festival dedicated to the Hindu deity Ganesh this year.

    The campaign encourages people to use eco-friendly material like papier-mache to make models of the deity instead of plaster-of-Paris.

    Having started in Mumbai in 2008, it has now reached over 15 major cities across India and also gained support from environmentalists, political dignitaries and celebrities.

    This year, the initiative associated with kids from various NGOs to create eco-friendly Ganesha idols. It organised a workshop at its studio in Mumbai where talented kids from the NGOs crafted Ganesha idols through unique techniques of clay moulding.

    A spokesperson from the company said: "With every passing year we only aim to make this campaign larger than the previous one and receiving immeasurable support from our charming listeners has been extremely gratifying for us."

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    Indian duo Shirshendu Banerjee and Arvinder Singh – known as Shandy and Sunny – won the 'Whickers Radio & Audio Funding Award' runner's up prize in London last week for their 'Biker Radio Rodcast'.

    The Whickers were established in 2015 to fund and recognise original and innovative documentary.

    They seek to use the generous legacy of their namesake, legendary British broadcaster Alan Whicker, to support emerging audio and film documentary-makers in the production of authored programmes and to recognise exceptional audio that has already been broadcast.

    The £3,000 ($3900) award is for their documentary proposal to follow several hardcore biking enthusiasts as they take part in one of the most gruelling motorcycling rallies in the world – the Raid de Himalaya.

    "We've always believed that the future is sound and winning a Whickers Award is an echo of appreciation from the finest promoters of original content," the duo said in a statement.

    "This puts Biker Radio Rodcast, India's first and exclusive podcast, on the international map as we continue to showcase the stories of motorcycle riders in India on the 'Long Way Home' [show]," they said.

    The winner of this year's first prize of £7,000 was radio documentary 'I'm a Shit Activist', inspired by Stokely Carmichael, a civil rights activist in Cuba.

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    India’s public broadcaster, All India Radio (AIR), has launched its streaming services on Amazon’s Alexa Smart Speakers.

    Alexa is a voice-enabled platform led by artificial intelligence that is capable of voice interaction, music playback, making to-do lists, setting alarms, streaming podcasts, playing audiobooks, and providing weather, traffic, sports, and other real-time information.

    Listeners can now tune in to Vividh Bharati and 14 other regional language streaming services of AIR on Alexa.

    The service was launched by Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Information & Broadcasting and Sports & Youth Affairs Rajyavardhan Rathore on Friday.

    “Launching of AIR's streaming services on Amazon’s Alexa platform would be a synergy of old and modern forms of communication,” he said. He hoped that this initiative will benefit Indian diaspora around the world.

    Amazon India Country Manager for Alexa Skills Dilip R.S said: “Listening to music, news and utility messaging is one of the most popular capabilities on Alexa.  Customers love how convenient it is to simply ask Alexa to play songs based on their preferences in different personal and family moments.”

    “I’m excited that customers can now listen music, news & utility, public service messages from All India Radio in 14 languages, with over 17 Alexa skills.  You can start with just asking ‘Alexa, open All India Radio FM Gold’ to relieve old melodies,” he further added.

    Speaking on the occasion, Prasar Bharati chairman A Surya Prakash said playlist of the AIR's archival assets will also be made available in the Alexa platform “in the future.”
    “Already, 390 million people around the world are using voice-based communication and this would almost triple to 1.83 billion people in the next three years,” Rajiv Sawhney, principal tech business development, Amazon Alexa (Asia), said.

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    India’s national broadcaster All India Radio (AIR) plans to mark 80 years of its External Services with year-long celebrations, which began with a cultural evening in New Delhi.

    The celebrations will culminate next year on the 80th anniversary of its first broadcast for foreign listeners.

    The first external broadcast from AIR was a Pashto service started by the then British rulers to counter the Nazi Germany propaganda during World War II on the October 1, 1939.

    All Indian missions abroad will observe the External Broadcasting Day in recognition of the cardinal role played by the External Services Division as a tool of public diplomacy and projecting India's image in the global arena. 

    The theme of the event is - Gandhi's Vision of Global Peace.

    AIR's External Services Division broadcasts programmes have a reach of over 150 countries through short and medium wave.

    It offers news bulletins and other programmes in 28 languages, out of which 14 are for the immediate neighbourhood.

    The foreign language services include Arabic, Baluchi, Burmese, Chinese, Dari, French, Indonesian, Persian and Baloch, while plans are underway to start services in Japanese and Bhutanese. 

    Photo: Twitter

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    India’s Reliance Broadcast Network Limited, which owns and operates the Big FM network, has appointed Abraham Thomas as its Chief Executive Officer.

    Thomas had recently quit as the CEO of the Jagran Group owned Radio City network, after spending three years with the company.

    He comes with more than two decades of experience and has worked with businesses across print, radio, TV and digital in India, China and South Asia.

    He has previously worked with Radio City, RED FM, Indian Express, Sony, Astro Broadcast and MTV.

    According to Big FM, as the company looks at charting newer benchmarks with technology-led propositions, platform-agnostic content, incubating audio and video talent, branded content and original music led spikes on digital, the appointment of Thomas with his complementing ideologies will trigger a swift phase of growth. The industry veteran will leverage his deep insights into the multi-media platforms to drive and sustain the network's vision of being a leading platform-agnostic radio player.

    Speaking about his new role Thomas said: "Audio entertainment is ever evolving and players are bringing formats that are new and engaging to drive listenership and enhance advertiser relationships. Big FM's programmatic and tech-driven developments paired with content marketing offerings, support the objective of pushing more original content and innovative brand integrated campaigns across platforms. In an evolving era where audiences are consuming audio content across multiple platforms, I am excited to join this evolving business and be a part of the successful transformation and growth that lies ahead.”

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    GMR Hyderabad International Airport Ltd (GHIAL) on launched South India's first Airport Radio at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport.

    The station, launched in collaboration with Radio Mirchi, is a part of its signature "#PassengerIsPrime" programme. 
    According to a statement by the company, Mirchi Airport Radio is a 24x7 custom-produced, exclusive airport radio, creating a melodious theme to the travel experience for the passengers at the airport. 

    It will offer popular and chart buster musical numbers with a mix of fil and non-film music in Telugu and Hindi languages.

    The airport whose terminal building is spread over 120,000 sq m, handles over 55,000 passengers on a daily basis. 
    Typically, a passenger stays at the airport from 15 minutes to 3 hours depending on his/her travel. 

    Speaking on the occasion, CEO of GHIAL, SGK Kishore said: "It is our continuous endeavour to enhance the passenger experience at the Airport and the 'Airport Radio' concept is one of our many #PassengerIsPrime initiatives. We hope that the passengers would enjoy this welcoming and melodious feature that the Airport offers during their travel." 

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    India’s Radio City 91.1FM has initiated a week-long campaign called "StreeDum" (Woman Power) in Mumbai, to eliminate the objectification of women.

    It aims to recognize the mentality in the Indian society that looks at women as objects of sexual gratification alone and to create awareness about this issue, which will be addressed on a large scale through breakfast show RJs Salil & Archana.

    As a part of the on-air campaign, listeners can share their real-life experiences and the station will substantiate these stories on air by explaining how objectification is an unfortunate but every day phenomenon in the life of most women across the world.  

    At the same time, awareness and engagement would be built on ground with street theatre performances based on the same theme.

    Kartik Kalla, Chief Creative Officer, Radio City said: "We have always aimed at solving citizen-centric problems using the power of radio. Most of us are not cognizant of how unconsciously we perpetuate sexual harassment through seemingly innocuous everyday actions. Each one of us is an agent of change and together we can make a conscious effort to treat women better." 

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    India’s international network 94.3 Radio One (Next Radio Ltd) declared its financial results for Q2 2018 in the board meeting held last week.

    Revenue was up 17% sequentially from Rs. 167. 3 million in Q1 2018-19 to Rs 195. 6 million in Q2 2018-19.  EBIDTA was up 32% from Rs. 25.4 million in Q1 2018-19 to Rs. 33.7 million in Q2 2018-19.

    In a Q2 to Q2 comparison, revenue was up 3% in Q2 18-19 as compared to Q2 17-18. Q2 18-19 EBIDTA at Rs. 33.7 million was up 13.4% over Q2 17- 18 at Rs. 29.7 million.

    The half year performance of the company, April to Sept 2018, saw a revenue growth of 4.8% from Rs. 344.6 million in Apr-Sept 17-18 to Rs. 362. 9 million in Apr-Sept 2018-19 and a superlative EBIDTA growth of 54.7% from Rs. 32.7 million in Apr-Sept 17-18 to Rs. 59.1 million in Apr-Sept 18-19.

    Vineet Singh Hukmani, MD & CEO Next Radio Ltd said: “Despite an overall commoditized & therefore difficult media market in the first half of the year, that continues to witness single digit topline growth, we were able to maximize efficiencies across functions resulting in substantial EBIDTA growth in our radio business.  We have not only strengthened our position with unique engaging content designed for our 5.94 million upscale listener tribe (IRS 2017) but we now have a means to measure brand consumption & preferences of our high value audience using our innovative audience tracker called the International Indian Monitor.”

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    94.3 Radio One, India’s international upscale format network, is the official radio partner in the country for the movie ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ - a biopic of Freddie Mercury, the legendary lead singer of the band Queen.

    The movie, starring American actor Rami Malek who plays Freddie, releases in theatres on November 16.

    To bring the movie alive for Queen fans all over India, the in-house band of the radio station, ‘The Radio One Band’ did a tribute of the song ‘Radio Ga Ga’.

    The station is running three separate contests on air along with trivia by various Indian celebs.

    The highlight is an interview with Peter Freestone who was Freddie’s best friend and biographer.

    The station will also feature Bruce Murray, who was in Freddie’s first band “The Hectics” at St. Peters Boy School in Panchgani.

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    India’s public broadcaster, All India Radio (AIR) remembered a visit by Mahatma Gandhi to its studios on Monday.

    Also known as Father of the Nation, Gandhi made his first and only address from AIR on November 12, 1947. The day was declared as the Jan Prasaran Diwas (Public Service Broadcasting Day) in 2000.

    Gandhi had decided to address refugees from Pakistan housed in a camp in Kurukshetra who were facing trauma and suffering caused by the partition of India through radio, as he could not visit them.

    His opening words from the studios of Broadcasting House were ‘Main ek anjan purush hoon’ (I am an anonymous man).

    He narrated his experience to newspaper correspondents, describing microphone broadcasting in his speech as "a wondrous thing", a manifestation of Shakti and of "the miraculous power of God".

    A snippet of the speech was played as a mark of respect and tribute to him.

    The broadcaster also acknowledged Gandhi for showing the meaning and purpose of 'BahujanHitaya and BahujanSukhaya' (Benefit to all, happiness to all), which is also AIR’s motto.

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    Famous Bollywood actress Kareena Kapoor Khan has made her debut as a radio presenter on Ishq 104.8 FM with a show called ‘What Women Want’.

    The show will discuss the everyday misogyny and sexism that women have to deal with in India.

    According to Kapoor, the show is primarily for the common women, as they would be able to derive inspiration from the stories told on this show.

    She said: “We have recorded shows with many amazing women. Not necessarily all of the movie stars. Like we have recorded a show with Sunny Leone, where she spoke about her struggles in this industry where she didn’t even know the language. At the same time, we interacted with Tinder India CEO Taru Kapoor. So, it is a mix of many things.”

    “We have spoken about topics that would otherwise not be spoken at home openly. Be it premarital sex or marriage. And these topics need to be spoken about.”

    She also shared how interacting with so many women from different walks of life has changed her perspective: “My mother brought up both us sisters and she was a single parent, today I know of my sister who is also a single mother. I have seen both of them leading their life so beautifully and that has influenced me. During the making of this show, I connected with so many wonderful women from different walks of life and it changed my perspective.”

    The show goes live from December 10 on Ishq 104.8 FM

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    Indian network 93.5 Red FM is addressing Kolkata's water crisis issue by spreading awareness about water conservation through their 'Nalbandi' initiative.

    In many parts of Kolkata free flowing water from Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) pipes which don't have taps, often gets wasted.

    To fix this issue Red FM is placing taps on such water sources and running a campaign to sensitise people about this through active discussion on ways and means to curb wastage of water.

    The listeners are encouraged to inform the station about any such free flowing taps in their area which need to be regulated.

    Spearheaded by its breakfast show RJ Praveen, the initiative will also advise listeners on how to avoid unnecessary water usage to importance of self-regulated consumption.

    Commenting on the initiative, Nisha Narayanan, COO, RED FM, says: "As we all know the entire world population is surviving on just 1% of water which is the only readily accessible source.  And yet, we don't care enough about this vital resource without which life is unimaginable. Through our 'Nalbandi' initiative, we want to drive the point home that saving water is the only means of sustaining life. Increasingly, water crisis is an overarching problem not only in India but also globally. In Kolkata, we see a noticeable disparity when it comes to conserving water. Everyday a humongous amount of water gets wasted from the free-flowing public 'nals' present across the city. While saving this copious amount will create a huge difference in people's lives who won't have to wait for hours to get some water. We want to ensure that through our initiative water conservation becomes a daily routine in everyday life."

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    Indian network Big FM, along with Robin Hood Army will be marking the Human Rights Day via its social initiative #NoKhaliPet, which aims to feed 100,000 underprivileged people across the country.

    Robin Hood army is a volunteer-based organisation that serves less fortunate people by collecting surplus food from restaurants and the community and is encouraging people to come forward and support the cause.

    The campaign, which kickstarted on December 3 across the network’s 59 stations, is spread over nine days and will conclude on the day of Human Rights Day, December 10.

    Listeners can be a part of the campaign and contribute their bit by sending information to the Robin Hood Army on their Facebook page regarding excess food in hotels, banquets, caterers, upcoming wedding to collect food as well as regarding donation of raw grains, legumes and pulses.

    Big FM presenters from 59 radio stations will be visiting the local chapter of Robin Hood Army, engaging with listeners who have been working towards this cause in the city.

    A spokesperson from the network said: "We have always been at the forefront of creating campaigns not only for the entertainment of our listeners but also those which gives impetus to the growth in our society. This hard-hitting campaign aims to reinforce the reality of the prevalent challenge and encourage our listeners to make a difference."

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    Indian network Big FM has launched Mask-a-thon, a campaign to encourage citizens of Delhi to prioritize health before fashion and wear masks without any inhibition.

    The campaign aims to motivate people to wear masks while stepping out as the air condition in the city has been deteriorating at an alarming rate.

    The station’s hosts including MJ Khurafati Nitin, MJ Jassi, MJ Yogi and MJ Simran are visiting highly polluted areas and key markets of the city to educate the residents and visitors.

    A network spokesperson said: "We are concerned about the health of our listeners from Delhi NCR and how it is affecting their day-to-day lives. The city has been declared as one of the most polluted cities in the world. Through this campaign, we aim to challenge the status quo while encouraging our listeners to bring a difference in their lives by wearing masks."

    MJ Khurafati Nitin said: "I always feel proud and love to boast about the rich culture that this city has to offer. Considering the current scenario, it is disheartening to see the Air Quality Index go so high that it has been declared unsafe. I am certain that with this campaign we would be able educate more people and guide them in the right direction."

    BIG MJ Jassi said: "It saddens us to see what is happening around me in the city. We have always been vocal about issues which ended up affecting so many lives at such a large scale. The urge to come across fashionable can't be bigger than your well-being."

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    India’s Red FM has come up with Robot Rashmi - the world’s first Hindi-speaking humanoid robot, as a radio host.

    Robot Rashmi has been indigenously developed by Ranjit Srivastava– a Ranchi-based software engineer, for Rs 50,000 ($700) over two years.

    Designed on the lines of Sophia Robot, developed by Hong Kong-based Hanson Robotics, it is the country’s first lip-syncing robot that uses Artificial Intelligence (AI), Linguistic Interpretation (LI), visual data and face recognition systems enabling it to act and answer queries like a human being.

    The robot’s show, #AskRashmi was launched last week and airs twice a day – from 10 am to 11 am in the morning and from 5 pm to 6 pm in the evening.

    During the show, the robot interacts with the callers and responds to their questions. These conversations vary between topics like politics, environment, road safety with an understanding of human emotions.


    Photo: YouTube

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    India's Big FM network announced the sixth season of its on-air singing talent hunt 'Big Golden Voice'. 

    The theme for this year’s contest is ‘Sur Bane Humara’, which celebrates the musical diversity of the country.

    The participants will be selected through multiple rounds, with the local station level auditions taking place first to select city-wide winners.

    The city winners' voice will be played on-air before top 10 finalists are picked.

    This year, the show will be judged by Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam.

    Previous editions’ judges include Shankar Mahadevan (Season 2 & 3), Malik Brothers - Armaan and Amaal Malik (Season 4), Anu Malik (Season 5) and Abhijeet Bhattacharya (Season 1).

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