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Bendat looms over ratings battle

THE continuing war between Perth’s commercial radio stations is tempting millionaire industry figure Jack Bendat back into the game.

Mr Bendat told Business News that the battle for top polling in the ratings surveys — including big salary offers to entice announcers to move — could prove too costly for some of the commercial stations in Perth and may be an ideal opportunity to purchase a station.

“There’s big money in radio,” he said.

Mr Bendat said he was in a position to wait and watch the market and make a purchase when the environment was right.

“The market is fighting for the same advertising dollars and that will continue for a long time.” he said.

“I can afford to sit back and wait… when the price becomes right I will go back in.”

In 1993 Mr Bendat sold two stations in the Perth market for an estimated $100 million.

However, he said he was a major shareholder in Austereo which owns both his former stations, now named Mix 94.5 and the All New 92.9.

The results of the second radio survey for 2001 show gains across almost all of the commercial stations with 6PR showing the biggest move, picking up 3.1 per cent of the market share.

The morning show on 6PR, with Paul Murray, picked up one of the single biggest gains, moving from 7 per cent to 11.2 per cent.

Mix 94.5 has retained a big lead in the breakfast timeslot with 96FM gaining about 3 per cent which places it ahead of the All New 92.9 at 13.8 per cent.

However, a high cumulative result for the commercial radio stations suggests the level of sampling in the marketplace remains quite high while the 96FM and the All New 92.9 find their place in the market.

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