Investing in radio? Here are some ideas.

Ask any Canadian immigrant, and he will cheerfully pull out of the secret drawer a handful of innovative business projects to be done in their native country.

It’s part of the heavy load that a first-generation immigrant carries on a daily basis: read the online newspapers from back home, watch the Romanian (in my case) news on the internet, listen to FM stations from home while working at the office. And, every once in a while, come up with a great idea that – much to  his surprise – nobody had it before!

Talk about things that Canadian politicians should address comes election time! Forget the economy: make sure that Rogers Cable includes that Romanian (Polish, Russian etc) channel on their lineup.


Along the lines of the above thoughts, and having in mind I am passionate about RADIO, here are the stations I would start right away in Romania, should the investors knock at my door:

  • a national network of FM stations dedicated to kids. My podcasts with stories read for kids by my father-in-law were a huge success. As a matter of fact, I would start this in any country in the world. As I find out from Petrisor Obae’s Romanian blog, somebody in Romania actually had the guts to apply this idea. The station is called Radio Itsy Bitsy. But there’s room for another one, and lots of other countries where this has not happened yet.
  • rural radio. As the saying goes, old fashioned, full-service radio. Read here a story. Listen here to a successful rural station in USA.  This would obviously be AM radio.
  • a full-time, Hungarian language AM station. All of my Hungarian friends in Transylvania are listening to radio stations from Hungary. They couldn’t care less for random Hungarian-language shows at the X or Y Romanian station, because they don’t want to bother looking on the dial for a station just for the sake of a show. They just stick to a full-time, Hungarian language station. And that one comes from across the border.
  • a network of all-news, AM stations in every big city in Romania. I would model that by 680 News in Toronto.
  • same as above, just that instead of all-news it would be news-talk, following the model of CFRB 1010
  • an AM station dedicated to the elder in every city. Same as 1050 CHUM is in Toronto.
  • a high-energy, dance radio station in FM, in every large city. The model would be Flaix FM from Barcelona. There are some already, but nothing like Flaix.
  • and, of course, the community-radio is a green market in Romania.  I did start up some local high-school stations in the mid-90s, but I doubt the seed has grown into anything remarkable. High school radio, hospital radio, army radio, neighborhood radio: they all wait to be developed.

Photo by Oslo In The Summertime on Thanks!

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