World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Orion Media


Orion Media

Orion Media
Industry Media
Founded 2009
Headquarters Birmingham, England, UK
Key people Phil Riley, Chief Executive
David Lloyd, Director of Programming & Marketing
Adrian Serle, Commercial Director

Orion Media is a UK commercial radio group run by radio veteran Phil Riley and backed by Lloyds Development Capital. It was created from the enforced sale of several radio stations in the English Midlands owned and operated by Global Radio.


Following Global Radio's acquisition of GCap Media in 2007, it was deemed that Global had an unfair advantage in the West Midlands market as they owned the vast majority of stations.

The OFT wanted to re-install competition in the Midlands area, causing Global to sell some of their stations. In May 2009, Riley purchased BRMB, Mercia, Wyvern, Beacon in the West Midlands and Heart 106 in the East Midlands from Global Radio for a total price of £37.5 million, beating off competition from several other interested parties [1] These stations accounted for around three per cent of the total commercial radio audience at the time.

In June 2009, the new group was named Orion Media.[2]

In January 2011, Orion's East Midlands station Heart 106 was rebranded and relaunched as Gem 106, successfully trading off the goodwill created by the very popular Gem-am oldies service, following the end of a franchise agreement with Global Radio allowing the station to use the Heart branding and carry networked programming from London.

In January 2012 Orion Media announced that its four FM stations in the West Midlands region were to be renamed 'Free Radio' - replacing the individual names BRMB, Mercia, Wyvern and Beacon.[3][4] The rebranding took place at 7pm on Monday 26 March 2012.[5]

On 24 May 2012, Orion Media announced it would relaunch its Gold West Midlands stations on AM frequencies and DAB as Free Radio 80s later in the year.[6] The station, which aired networked programming from London with opt-outs for sports programming, switched to locally produced output playing 1980s music alongside news and information and live football commentaries on Monday 4 September 2012, ending a franchise agreement with Global Radio which allowed the station to carry Gold branding and output.


Station name Former name Based in Broadcast Areas Frequency & Multiplex Format Transmission Date
Free Radio Birmingham BRMB Birmingham Birmingham 96.4FM, CE Birmingham Hot AC 19 September 1974
Free Radio Coventry & Warwickshire Mercia Birmingham Coventry and Warwickshire 97.0, 102.9FM, NOW Coventry Hot AC 23 May 1980
Free Radio Herefordshire & Worcestershire Wyvern Worcester Herefordshire and Worcestershire 97.6, 96.7, 102.8FM Hot AC 4 October 1982
Free Radio Shropshire & Black Country Beacon Wolverhampton Black Country and Shropshire 97.2, 103.1FM, NOW Wolverhampton Hot AC 12 April 1976
gem106 Heart Nottingham East Midlands 106.0FM, NOW Nottingham, NOW Leicester Adult Contemporary 23 September 1997
Free Radio 80s Gold Birmingham West Midlands 990, 1017, 1152, 1359AM, CE Birmingham, NOW Wolverhampton, NOW Coventry 1980s music 4 April 1989, 15 January 1989


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.