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Sunday 31 August 2014

It's early days, but radio rivals happy with figures

Breda Heffernan

Published 01/11/2013 | 01:55

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Pat Kenny: 'it's early days, but we're heading in the right direction'
Claire Byrne
Pat Kenny

PAT Kenny and radio rival Sean O'Rourke have declared themselves pleased after the latest radio listenership figures showed both presenters appear to have got off to a good start with their new shows.

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However, the figures provide only a one-month snapshot of the shows. The numbers cover the 12-month period from September 2012, and therefore also cover 11 months' coverage by each of Kenny's and O'Rourke's predecessors.

The broadcasters, who have been facing off in a head-to-head ratings war since the start of September, are now quietly confident about their futures as they settle into their programmes.

The latest round of Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures show a 23,000 jump in audience numbers for Kenny's Newstalk slot and a 6,000 increase for O'Rourke's 'Today' programme on RTE.

Other big-name winners in the JNLR figures include Marian Finucane, who grew her listenership by 18,000.

Her RTE colleague Claire Byrne also increased the ratings for her Saturday show by 12,000, while Ronan Collins enjoyed a 16,000 boost.

Ian Dempsey's 'Breakfast Show' on Today FM added an extra 12,000 listeners, taking his total up to 180,000, while 2fm rival Hector O hEochagain shed 2,000, down to 124,000.

Ryan Tubridy has failed to stem the tide of a falling listenership; he shed 7,000 listeners and stands at 152,000.

Today FM rival Ray D'Arcy lost 4,000 listeners, but is still comfortably beating Tubridy, with 231,000 tuning in daily.

APPEAL

However, all eyes were on how Kenny and O'Rourke fared.

While O'Rourke is beating his rival in the ratings war, with his programme bringing in 334,000 compared with Kenny's 78,000, it appears people are heeding Kenny's appeal to "move the dial".

"The only indication we have is a graph and we're heading up. Realistically, it will be next year before we know how we are doing," Kenny said.

Irish Independent

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