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Launch of Power 98.9 FM is Underway

Posted by radio On March - 10 - 2012

By Mpho Smart


POWER 98.9 FM is poised to launch after winning a licence from the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) last year.


Preparations for the launch of the new talk show station in Gauteng are underway. Given Mkhari, one of the owners of the new station, said landing a broadcast licence was a dream come true. Winning the licence was a watershed moment for the Richtrau consortium which comprises companies owned by businessmen Mkhari and Sandile Zungu.  Zungu is the Executive Chairman of Zungu Investments Company (ZICO) which was established in 2002. ZICO is involved in financial services, mining, general services, gaming, book publishing and media.


Power FM will compete for SABC’s SAFM and Primedia’s Radio 702 audiences with its broad coverage of current affairs. Mkhari, a co-founder and chief executive officer of MSG Afrika Investment (MSGAI), said the station would be targeted primarily at the growing black middle class. He said the station would provide a platform for the audience to ‘freely’ share and debate issues that affect them. Mkhari believes there is a need for a radio service for an audience somewhere between SAFM and Radio 702 and that the market was elastic enough to accommodate more players in the country.


MSGAI co-owns the first and only commercial radio station in Limpopo, Capricorn FM. The government’s aim in awarding additional commercial broadcasting licences is to facilitate the involvement of historically disadvantaged communities into the radio industry. Mkhari said: “The licensing process seems to have addressed inequalities from a transformation perspective.” He said the industry has a lot of work to do still.


ICASA had received 41 applications in response to its invitation to apply for broadcasting licences in 2009. Richtrau is looking to launch the station in June.



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