Even Jesus couldn't have followed in Gerry Ryan's shoes, says 2fm's boss
RADIO boss Dan Healy has said even Jesus Christ could not have saved 2fm's waning listenership figures in the wake of Gerry Ryan's death.
The 2fm head was defending host Ryan Tubridy ahead of the release of today's Joint National Listenership Research (JNLR) figures. Since taking over from Gerry in 2010, Ryan has struggled to retain the same loyal listenership.
The last JNLR figures, released at the end of October 2013, saw Tubridy drop from 159,000 listeners to 152,000.
"Ryan had the most difficult job in the history of radio," Mr Healy told the Irish Independent. "You could have put Jesus Christ in that slot and the figures would have dropped. It's as simple as that."
Four years after the death of Gerry Ryan, Healy says 2fm is finally ready to give the station a radical rehaul.
"Tubridy did an extraordinary job, he helped stabilise 2fm after Gerry's death," he said. "With the re-launch of 2fm we want to change the station, to build a unique radio station across the schedule."
2fm has been steadily losing money since 2008 and Mr Healy admits: "We have lost revenue but it's not an audience issue, it's an advertising issue."
'Republic of Telly' stars Bernard O'Shea, Jennifer Maguire and former Phantom FM presenter Keith Walsh were announced as the station's new early morning breakfast hosts.
The new radio show, which has yet to be named, will launch next month. "We still don't know what the format is going to be," Jennifer Maguire said.
"We'll figure that out in the next few weeks. But we have really good chemistry and banter. I think comedy is our unique selling point; we like having a laugh."
Comedian Bernard, who currently presents panel show Good Week Bad Week, said: "The more voices, the better."
The revised 2fm line-up will be announced next month.