Global buys Smooth Radio

Global Radio has confirmed the acquisition of Smooth Radio owner Guardian Media Group.

Smooth radio

The radio group, which has a 4.5% share of the commercial radio market and also owns five regional stations under the Real brand, has long been the subject of takeover rumours and was said to have attracted several offers.

The value of the deal is undisclosed but several reports, including former sister brand The Guardian, have it at £50m.

The stations join the Capital and Heart networks as well as Classic FM in Global’s portfolio.

As a consequence of the deal, GMG Radio CEO Stuart Taylor is to leave the company with immediate effect. He will be replaced by Global’s regional MD Mark Lee.

Ashley Tabor, founder and executive president of Global, says: “We believe that this is a very strong business with brands and assets that are highly complementary to those of Global Radio.”

GMG is reportedly set to announce £45m losses for the year to 31 March. The deficit could lead to compulsory redundancies, according to a weekend report in The Sunday Times.

Andrew Miller, chief executive of GMG: “Our portfolio of investments that lie outside our core national newspaper business exist to underpin the long-term financial and editorial integrity of the Guardian. If we believe that best value for the Group lies in the disposal of a non-core asset, then we will do so.”

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here