Fusion Radio Sales to merge operations with First Radio

Fusion Radio Sales will transfer all of its operations to First Radio Sales, formerly Clear Channel Radio Sales, from March 31. The move is likely to be seen as a precursor to the consolidation expected across the industry later this year, when the Communications Act becomes law.

Fusion is the sales arm for the six-strong Fusion Radio Group, which owns 107.9 FM Fusion in Oxford and Kick FM in Berkshire, and handles sales for 30 local radio stations. First will handle sales for more than 80 local commercial radio stations.

Fusion head of national sales Stephen Allen is moving to First temporarily to oversee the move and to ensure continuity for clients and agencies. Fusion staff will move to First’s new offices on Regent Street in London and no redundancies are expected as a result of the transfer.

Radio buyers say that the deal will fill in the gaps in First Radio’s geographical spread and should bring Fusion stations in line with general trading systems such as J-ET. The move will also help to raise the profile of the Fusion stations.

Guardian Media Group sold Clear Channel Radio Sales to Radio Investments last December (MW December 5, 2002) following its decision to move sales for Jazz FM to Chrysalis Group. GMG acquire CCRS in November (MW November 7, 2002).

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