Sony Ericsson has signed a landmark deal to advertise exclusively on Absolute Radio the day it rebrands from Virgin Radio. The station will officially relaunch on September 29.
The new name for Virgin Radio was revealed earlier this month, following the station’s £53.2m acquisition by TIML Golden Square SMG. Virgin Group exercised its right to revoke the Virgin licence following the station’s change of ownership.
TIML, a subsidiary of Times of India, bought the business with radio consultancy Absolute Radio in May this year.
The rebrand is being backed by a £5m advertising campaign using the strapline “Discover real music” and created by Albion, which won the account in June.
It is thought to be the first time an advertiser has bought 24 hours worth of inventory to support a broadcaster’s launch. Sony Ericsson’s media agency is Mediaedge:cia, while McCann Erickson handles its advertising.
The move supports Sony Ericsson’s strategy to push its music services and high-end devices, such as the W980. The PlayNowPlus service was launched this month and extends its existing PlayNow service, which allows consumers to download music for 99p a track.