Nine Radio kills sports experiment: music returns to classic brands

• 2UE, Magic and 4BH call sings dusted off and back in business

Nine Radio has announced a move to a music format playing the best of the 70s, 80s and 90s across its AM stations in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, along with digital radio in Perth.

The move will see the return to the airwaves of heritage radio brands 2UE 954AM, Magic 1278AM and 4BH 882AM, with each station also featuring live local news, sport and weather. In Perth the station will be branded Magic DAB+ Perth.

The move is bad news for competing AM music stations 2CH, 4KQ and Cruise 1323 in Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide.

“We’re very proud to be bringing back great radio brands like 2UE, Magic and 4BH with a music format that we know will resonate with audiences in each city,” said Tom Malone, Nine’s managing director – radio.

“Until recently Magic and 4BH were successful music stations and our research clearly shows there is a gap in the market for this music format, built around the best of the 70s, 80s and 90s.”

The new stations will have a soft launch on February 2 and will be available in digital quality via online, apps, smart speakers and DAB+.

Penny Kaleta, Nine’s director of sales – radio, said: “For our clients we believe this move to a music format is highly complementary to our existing talk-radio formats and gives the brands who work with us a strong audience combination in terms of what we can offer.”

2UE, Magic, 4BH and Magic DAB+ Perth will replace Macquarie Sports Radio. The stations will continue to honour their existing sports rights contracts with the AFL, NRL and Cricket Australia.

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