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|City of license||Newcastle, New South Wales|
|Broadcast area||Newcastle, Lake Macquarie, Maitland and surrounds|
|Slogan||Newcastle's Widest Variety Of Music|
|Frequency||1415 kHz AM (1931-1935)
1410 kHz AM (1935-1978)
1413 kHz AM (1978-1992)
102.9 MHz FM (1992-)
|First air date||August 1, 1931 (as 2KO)
October 12, 1992 (as 2KKO)
|Callsign meaning||derived from former callsign 2KO
|Former callsigns||2KO (1931-1992)|
|Affiliations||Triple M Network
2GB Macquarie Radio Network (Rugby Coverage)
|Owner||Southern Cross Austereo. Radio Newcastle.Pty.Ltd|
KOFM (call sign: 2KKO) is an Australian radio station, licensed to, and serving Newcastle and surrounds. It broadcasts at 102.9 megahertz on the FM band from its studios in Charlestown. It is owned by Southern Cross Austereo and Its sister station is NXFM.
The station commenced operations as 2KO, based in the Newcastle suburb of Kotara on August 1, 1931. Founded by Allen Fairhall (later Sir Allen Fairhall) 2KO was licensed to The Newcastle Broadcasting Company. The station operated on 1410 kHz with a transmission strength of 25 watts. The station launched from the backyard of a resident's home, with the licensee's dining room being the only studio the station had at the time. Programs ran from 7 to 10 p.m., later moving into daytime programming. Ten minutes of ad time was sold during the week, selling around 15 pounds ($30 today) of revenue for the station. Chief Engineer was K. N. Greenhalgh AMIRE. Studio & Production Manager was 2KO Chief Announcer Harold Pickhover. Advertising & Merchandising Manager was Keith F. Winser F.O.A.
Two years later in 1933, the station moved its AM transmitter to Sandgate, and was operated from several locations including 72 Hunter Street, Newcastle until January 1937, when new studios and offices in the heart of Newcastle in the CML Building at 110 Hunter Street, Newcastle. In its time on the AM band, the station had its power increased twice, first to 2,000 watts, and then to 5,000 watts, using a directional aerial system.
In the days before television, peak listening time was around 8pm, but with television arriving in the country in the late 1950s, the station had to change formats to survive the new medium. This was even more the case when 2KO's owners at the time, United Broadcasting Company (Australia) (who also owned Sydney's 2UE), itself owned by the local Lamb family, was part of the consortium that brought television to Newcastle, launching NBN Television on channel 3 in 1962.
These changes led to 2KO becoming one of the first, if not the first, Top 40 music radio stations in Australia. This took the audience by storm, and helped re-established radio as the personal medium.
In 1978, as part of a nationwide realignment of radio station frequencies, 2KO moved to 1413 kHz.
In May 1988, 2KO moved to its current facilities at 252 Pacific Highway Charlestown.
On October 12, 1992, 2KO converted to the FM band, changing its callsign to 2KKO, and branding itself as KOFM 102.9. Four years later, on January 22, 1996, the parent company of KOFM (and of NXFM), Radio Newcastle Pty. Ltd., was purchased by Austereo. A few more years later, Austereo sold 50% to RG Capital Radio Network, whose stake in the station then transferred in 2004 to Macquarie Regional RadioWorks, upon the purchase of RG Capital's stations. On April 2011 Southern Cross Media bought out Austereo for $714 million giving Southern Cross Media full ownership of KOFM.
Election Debate Controversy
After the second Leaders' debate during the Federal Election, the breakfast announcers incorrectly asserted that Mr Abbott won the debate, when in fact the widely acclaimed winner was the PM Kevin Rudd. When those dissenting from the announcers' broadcast statements posted calls for correction on the programme's Facebook page, the posts were removed, and the posters blocked from making further comments.
- Peter Pickhover *James Aloyius Montgomery Max *Elma Gibbs *Ron Roberts
- John O'Brien *Pat Barton *Bert Burns *Ron Gibson *David Mulley
- Cliff Musgrave *Leon Bailey *Peter Harn *Phil Hunter *Ron Hurst *John Jones
- Sam Kronja *Allan Lappan *John Laws *Gary Meadows *John Melouney
- Warwick Teece *John Thompson *Gray Clark *Mal Elliott *Mike Jefferys
- "Big Steve" Wakely *Alan McGirvan *Peter Meehan *Ed Webster *John Waite
- Tony Stanton *Tony "Music" Williams *Lee Cornell *Chuck Hobler *Art Ryan, Ron French
- Peter O'Callaghan *Jim Stewart (Jim Ball) *Matt Tapp *Brian Towers (Wayne Kerrick)
- Tommy Tucker (late) *Paul Turner *Ray Waite *Ross Weldon *Tim Webster *Vince Neill *Paul Hardy (late)
- Barry Coleman *Iain Edwards *Bob Gallagher *Peter Graham programmanager *Bill Grundy *David Jones *Mal Hedstrom *Richard King *Mike Connors * Teenah Bernice *Nat Jeffery *Andy Simpson *Fiona Cameron *Kev Kellaway
- John Henry *Stewart Horne *Selwyn Jones *Wayne Mason (Frank Fursey)
- John O'Callaghan *John Paige *David Ross *Mike Ahern *Peter Brennan* Mike Duncan* The 80's Guys (reforming in late 2010) * Jo King* Barry Graham, Pete Davis
- Nick "Nicko" Condon* Dion Clewett*
- "Peter Buckley" - 1982
- Clayton Brown - Breakfast Producer ( David and Tanya)/ Announcer / Voice Artist..."The Fugitive"
Rugby League coverage
Following Broadcast Operations Group's decision not to carry the Continuous Call Team from 2GB in Sydney, and therefore, ruling that rival 2HD could not carry Newcastle Knights games, KOFM picked up the program (and rights to Knights games), beginning 2006. They also poached long time 2HD commentator Gary Harley to continue his role as commentator on Knights games. They do not carry 2GB's coverage on Sundays (but will broadcast Knights games should be played on a Sunday).
As of 2013 the station has opted to take The Offload from Triple M Sydney on Saturday and Sunday from 12pm to 3pm following the changes in the commercial radio rights deals with the National Rugby League
- Tanya & Steve G 6:00am to 9:00am
- Ryzy 9:00am to 12:00pm
- The "Little A" Experience with Andy Simpson 12:00pm to 4:00pm
- The Rush Hour with David Collins 4:00pm to 6:00pm
- News Director: David Dollin
- News Presenters: Michelle Stephenson
- The Weekender with The Little A (6 a.m. to 9 a.m. Saturday)
- Continuous Call Team (Saturdays only, midday to 8 p.m.)
- Newcastle Knights games
- Weekend announcers include Mike/ Blanchy/ JR/ Grant