Commercial radio in Australia is 100 years old

A new report commissioned by industry body Commercial Radio & Audio called “Connecting Communities: The Economic and Social Contribution of Commercial Radio and Audio in Australia,” will be presented in detail at Radiodays Asia this year, see below for some insights.

Commercial radio in Australia turns 100 on 23 November this year, it began with a broadcast of the St Andrews Choir performing “The Swan” on 2SB and today there are more than 260 commercial radio stations across Australia including 220 located in regional areas and gaining new audiences through mobile apps, streaming and podcasts. The industry supports 6,600 full-time equivalent jobs, with 38% of jobs located in regional Australia and the industry contributes AU$1 billion to the nation’s annual GDP.

The study also found that commercial radio stations broadcast 1.1 million hours of Australian content (much of it regional), 2.7 million Australian songs, 42,000 hours of news, and 2,200 hours of emergency service content in 2022.

CRA CEO Ford Ennals says, “The Connecting Communities report is the first time in 100 years of broadcasting that we have evaluated the economic contribution of radio and its role in delivering trusted, local content to listeners all over the country. These figures show how important it is to have a sustainable Australian radio industry that delivers great audio content free of charge to everyone, everywhere.

The study also found that radio has positive impacts across other industries and sectors, playing a key role in music discovery, broadcasting 160,000 hours of Australian music or 2.7 million songs yearly, which is a total of 7,400 plays per day. Commercial radio networks also made $82 million in charitable contributions through donations and airtime in 2022.

Download the report here.

Share this article