Radio 538

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Not to be confused with TV 538.

Coordinates: 52°13′31″N 5°09′32″E / 52.225166°N 5.158818°E / 52.225166; 5.158818

Radio 538
Logo Radio 538 2014.svg
City of license Hilversum
Broadcast area Netherlands
Slogan The Beat Of The Moment![1]
Frequency between 102.0 and 102.9 MHz (FM) (and in Limburg on 891 kHz on Medium Wave)
First air date 11 December 1992 (1992-12-11)
Format Pop Rock Dance R&B
Audience share 12% (January 2012 / February 2012, [1])
Former callsigns Radio 538 (1992–2012)
538 (2012-2013)
Owner Talpa Media Holding
Sister stations SLAM!
Webcast [2] 538 Webstream

Radio 538[2] (Dutch: vijf-drie-acht) is a Dutch commercial radio station aimed at young people and is owned by Talpa Media. It has a broad format which includes Top 40, dance, R&B, pop, rock and recent hits. The station runs many current hits, mostly from the Dutch Top 40. As of January–February 2012, the station has a daily audience reach in the 7:00–19:00 time period of 12%, putting it in first place. The regional broadcasting network from ORN Radio is on second place with 11,9%, the third place is for the public broadcaster Radio 2 with a share of 10%.[3]


Radio 538 logo used from 2004 to 2012
538 logo used from 2012 to 2014
Dutch Radio 538 commercial outing, in 2006 at the Neude in Utrecht
Radio 538 Competition

Radio 538 is founded in 1992 and is the successor of Sky Hitradio, a sister station of Sky Radio that broadcast from July to 11 December 1992 and an initiative of a group of former Radio Veronica employees, led by Lex Harding. Transmissions began on 11 December 1992 from a villa in Bussum. The name Radio 538 is a reference to the wavelength (538m:558 kHz) on which Radio Veronica was broadcast in the seventies (Dutch: Zeventies). 538 refers to the wavelength at which Veronica in the seventies exceptions from the sea (538 meters on the medium, approximately 557 kHz). Presenters of the first hour were Rick van Velthuysen, Wessel van Diepen, Erik de Zwart, Michael Pilarczyk, Will Luikinga and Corné Klijn.

The broadcasts of Radio 538 were initially made in Studio Concordia in Bussum, a building that is already in the fifties was used as a television studio and was used in the eighties and nineties by Veronica program Countdown. Late nineties Radio 538 moved from Bussum to Hilversum, where it moved into a studio complex close to the town hall. Since December 1, 2012 houses the entire 538 Group in the 4400 m2 large former NCRV building at Bergweg 70 in Hilversum.

Initially, from its start in 1992 until 1995, Radio 538 was available only via cable. A request to be allowed to broadcast over the air was rejected at that time. Following a media campaign during which 320,000 signatures were collected, Radio 538 got its over-the-air frequency in 1995 – or more precisely, a collection of several regional frequencies. In 2003, Radio 538 was granted a new nationwide frequency, 102 MHz (FM). 538 had to pay €57 million for the new frequencies.

In 1995 Lex Harding started TMF (The Music Factory), a TV station, and Erik de Zwart became the new chairman of 538. At the end of 2002 Erik de Zwart left to go to competitor Noordzee FM. Jan-Willem Brüggenwirth became the new chairman. In December 2003 Radio 538 was sold to Advent International, Lex Harding retaining 10% of the shares. In May 2005 Radio 538 was sold in its entirety to Talpa Media Holding, owned by Dutch media mogul John de Mol. In June 2007 De Mol sold the TV and radio assets of Talpa to RTL Nederland and became shareholder of RTL Nederland.

Radio 538 managed in 10 years to win a substantial market share. In April/May 2004 the station nudged years of market leader Sky Radio to the throne. Nowadays 538 still alternating with NPO Radio 2 and NPO 3FM the most listened radio station in the Netherlands. The marketing share is between 10 and 12 percent.[4] In 2002, 2004 and 2009 Radio 538 won the Marconi Award for best radio station.

In Flanders a Flemish version of Radio 538 launched on cable in February 1999, pending the airwave frequency allocation for national commercial radio, which in the late nineties was announced by the Flemish government in 2000. When in 2000 was no clear procedure for a given frequency, Radio 538 withdrew from Flanders.

In 2011 Talpa worked together with Finnish media conglomerate Sanoma to buy the Dutch activities of SBS Broadcasting from German broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1 Media. As part of that deal De Mol sold his shares in RTL Nederland to the RTL Group, retaining the ownership of Radio 538 and its sister station SLAM!FM. In 2014 Radio 538 started with some new program's. De Avondploeg, De Show Zonder Naam and Jurk!FM.


The station focused in the beginning mainly on youth with slogans like "The station of a young generation". With the advent of disc jockeys as Edwin Evers was the target group expanded and the station became wider. Stll weekly ran a new Alarmschijf and Dancesmash. The listener can also help decide which music is played in the program Maak 't or kraak 't and in past the Top 538. Jingles for the station is recorded by Wessel van Diepen, Rick Romijn and Kimberly van de Berkt.

Nowadays, the station makes commercial hitradio for young people in the broadest sense of the word. The format consists of Top 40 music, dance, Contemporary R&B and hits from a young history, supplemented with information and entertainment by DJs. In the morning, in addition to current hits, also played classics. In the afternoon and evening especially current hits.


The first years 538 Radio aired only on the cable. In 1994 a request was also to be allowed to broadcast in the air are rejected in favor of a number of smaller stations (including Sky Radio receives no frequency). Radio 538 started this a media campaign. In a total of 320,000 signatures were collected. In 1995 Radio 538 received the coveted FM radio frequency (103.0 MHz, from Lelystad). On January 1, 1998 the station moved to another frequency package, consisting entirely different frequencies by region.

At the air distribution in 2003 (called Zerobase) Radio 538 received a new nationwide FM network. Radio 538 has since been received in large parts of the Netherlands over the air on the FM band via the following frequencies: 102.1/102.3 MHz North Holland, Groningen 102.2 MHz, 102.3 MHz North Brabant, Gelderland, Limburg, 102.4 MHz Zeeland and North Brabant, Friesland and Utrecht 102.5 MHz, 102.6 MHz Overijssel and Gelderland, 102.7 MHz South Holland and Drenthe. Radio 538 promotes its frequencies as "102 FM".

Radio 538 can also be received via Digitenne, on mobile phones via UMTS (on the portals of KPN i-mode and Vodafone Live) and in Limburg on AM 891 kHz, 336 m. Furthermore, the station can be received in the whole of Europe via satellite and worldwide via the Internet.

Radio 538 also transmits a TMC signal from traffic for route navigation.

From Tuesday, August 30th, 2011 until November 23, 2011 Radio 538 was in the region of Limburg-Maastricht from 12am at night until 7 pm broadcast on 106.0 MHz from the tower of Ping FM in the Belgian Lanaken. Ping FM was ordered by the Vlaamse Regulator voor de Media (Flemish Regulator for the Media) eventually stop the retransmission of programs of Radio 538. In mid-September 2014 the programs of 538 can be heard via Ping FM. During the day on weekdays, on Thursday, till Sunday also few hours in the evening and on Saturday and Sunday mornings.


The main pillar of the weekday programming is the morning show Evers staat op with Edwin Evers, which is heard on the station since April 2000. From 10:00 to 12:00, Menno de Boer is heard with the program Greatest Hits. Frank Dane presents the lunch program. Then followed by Mark Labrand between 14:00 and 16:00. From 16:00 to 19:00, Coen Swijnenberg and Sander Lantinga are heard with De Coen & Sander Show. In the evening, the programs Trending Tracks with Martijn Biemans and De Avondploeg with Daniël Lippens and Ivo van Breukelen are successively heard. At night, the different programs are heard. From Tuesday to Friday Edwin Noorlander and Eddy Keur are heard with De Show Zonder Naam. On Monday from 3:00 to 6:00 and from Tuesday to Friday, Dorus van Mosselveld presents from 4:00 to 6:00 and on Monday from 0:00 to 3:00 and on Tuesday and Wednesday from 2:00 to 4:00 Dimitris Kops. On Thursday and Friday from 2:00 to 4:00 Desmond Baidjoe presents.

On Friday afternoon the Dutch Top 40 has been broadcast since 1993. The Friday night consists from the De Frank en Vrijdag Show with Frank Dane, then Wessel van Diepen in Global Dance Chart and A State of Trance with Armin van Buuren. The Saturday morning begins with Het Beste van Evers Staat Op, followed by Dennis Ruyer and Barry Paf. In the evening one hears Weekend Vibe with Edwin Noorlander and Dance Department presented by Dennis Ruyer. The Sunday starts with D'r uit! Followed by Dennis Ruyer. Then they heard Barry Paf, Weekend Vibe with Edwin Noorlander and in the evening Ivo van Breukelen. Desmond Baidjoe presents the Saturday and Sunday night between 4:00 and 8:00.

Every hour (at Evers Staat Op, Dane Doet 't and De Coen en Sander Show also on the half hour), the news is broadcast, which is provided by the ANP. The regular newsreaders on Radio 538 are:

At other times the news is read by newscasters associated with the ANP.


In 1999, Radio 538 started the hip-hop and contemporary R&B program Juize, which developed into the radio station Juize.FM on 18 July 2004. Since 1 July 2005, Juize FM is broadcast in most of the Netherlands by cable and has also started running shows with presenters.

DJs (2015)[edit]

Former DJs[edit]


Queen's/King's day[edit]

Until 2011 538 organized annually at Queen's Day a big party on the Museumplein in Amsterdam. Several artists from home and abroad joined there by from 12pm and the day was traditionally ended with a grand musical and visual spectacle of a well-known DJs. At this event, some 300,000 visitors came off. In November 2011 the city of Amsterdam decided that this Queen's Day Party was not allowed to take place in connection with safety. Initially, the 538-party in 2012 at the square near RAI Amsterdam will be held, but in January of that year it was decided to call off the whole party. After an evaluation of the edition 2012 the city council decided in 2013 to pursue the creation of more scattered, smaller celebrations on Queen's Day. Since King's Day 2014 the big party finds annual place again, but at a different location; in Breda on the Chasséveld.[5]

538 Schoolawards[edit]

From 2005 to 2012 538 reached annual the 538 Schoolawards from the best school in the Netherlands. All secondary schools in the Netherlands were able to register for this election, after which the students could vote for their school. The schools with the most votes went together into battle in the final to win a big school and the 538 Schoolawards title. In 2006 the Zwijsen College in Veghel won. In 2007 the prize was won by Adelbert College in Wassenaar, in 2008 by CSG Willem van Oranje in Oud-Beijerland, in 2009 by the Baudartius College in Zutphen, in 2010 by Het Baarnsch Lyceum in Baarn, in 2011 by Sg Spieringshoek in Schiedam and in 2012 by Kalsbeek College in Woerden. From 2013 SLAM!FM took the School Awards over from 538. From now called the SLAM!Schoolawards.

Turn up the Beach[edit]

On July 9, 2011 538 organized in collaboration with Spa Reine the beach festival Turn up the Beach. This first edition on the beach of IJmuiden was a great success. All 10,000 tickets were sold. On July 14, 2012 538 organized in collaboration with Pepsi the second edition of Turn up the Beach. On July 13, 2013 was the third edition of Turn up the beach.

538 JingleBall[edit]

On December 22, 2012 Radio 538 and RTL 5 organized the price show and music festival 538 JingleBall in the Ziggo Dome. This first edition was a great success. This show was organized because Radio 538 existed 20 years in 2012. On December 21, 2013 was the second edition of 538 JingleBall, this time there was only dance music ran by Dutch DJ's. Even before the second edition was held Radio 538 had announced that there would be a third edition of 538 JingleBall. It was held on December 19 and December 20, 2014.

538 Oranjeplein[edit]

If the Netherlands is joining a UEFA European Championship or FIFA World Cup, Radio 538 organizes the 538 Oranjeplein on the Museumplein in Amsterdam. People can watch all matches of the Dutch national team jointly on large screens at the Museumplein. During the 2014 World Cup the Oranjeplein was however after the eighth finals no longer held since the times of the matches that followed because of the time difference with Brazil were too late and the inconvenience was too large for local residents.[6] During the semi-finals, however, it organized a Oranjeplein again, but in a different location, the Arena Park, next to the Amsterdam Arena.

The Voice of Holland[edit]

Radio 538 broadcasts during The Voice of Holland together with RTL 4 the live shows of the talent.


Hier met je rekening![edit]

An annual item Hier met je rekening! (English: Here is your bill!). With this action 538 pays the accounts of listeners. To join it, the listener must send an email with a copy of the bill plus the description and amount of the bill. The account can also be uploaded on the website of Radio 538 using a special form which is for and during the action to find on this site. The entries will be once per hour a name called. The person who is involved should then call to the studio within fifteen minutes, then his or her account is paid (Radio 538 then makes the total amount of the account to the account of the listener so that it can pay on account of this). From 2014 538 also pays bills via Twitter. On the Twitter page of Radio 538 during the action a submitted bill appears and the one who recognizes this bill must then retweet within fifteen minutes, after which the bill will be paid. This action takes place twice a year, in January, after the Christmas holidays and in August/September, after the summer holidays, because people in these two holidays to spend much money on groceries for Christmas dinner (in the holidays) or souvenirs and trips during the holidays (in the Summer) and then often left with little money to pay for other often high bills that often lie thereby. Radio 538 assists over here to pay them a hand by these accounts..


Here there is a secret person, better known as Mr. X that passes through the land.

Every day, he is at a different location. On which location the listener gets little tips on the radio. The listener who finds on this basis Mr. X, receives 50 000, - euro note. If he was somewhere he sticks a sticker to and tells at the end of the day where he has been.

538 voor War Child[edit]

538 voor War Child was an action that took place from March 25 to April 1, 2011, from March 9 to March 16, 2012 and from March 22 to March 29, 2013.

During the action the money was collected for War Child, an organization dedicated to help children cope with their war trauma. Listeners of the radio station came up with the stunts that were done during the week of action, and that money was raised. Every day was 538 with a mobile studio on a different place in the Netherlands.

The places where 538 in 2012 was a guest was: Maastricht, 's-Hertogenbosch, Nijmegen, Hilversum, Alphen aan den Rijn, Meppel, Leeuwarden and Groningen. Performances were given by, among other Pearl Jozefzoon, Glennis Grace, Hardwell, Ben Saunders, Iris Kroes, VanVelzen, Ferry Corsten, Destine, Waylon, Di-rect, Charly Luske, Racoon, Lange Frans and Xander de Buisonjé.

In 2013, 538 was a guest in: Groningen, Heerenveen, Alkmaar, Gouda, Bergen op Zoom, Veenendaal, Arnhem and 's-Hertogenbosch.

On May 1, 2013 it was announced that 538 stops 538 for War Child.[7]

Win met de zin[edit]

Win met de zin (English: Win with the sentence) is a game that was first played on August 25, 2014. From this year, this game is played twice a year, in February and August. Four familiar votes have each recorded a portion of the sentence "The Beat Of The Moment Radio 538". The starting price is 1000 euros and each game round where not the complete correct answer is given increases the prize of 250 euros. The jackpot is won by the listener who does well all four votes. Then start a new round. The game is played every hour between 7:00 and 19:00.


Radio 538 was founded in 1992 by Lex Harding. In 1995 Lex Harding founded the TV channel TMF (The Music Factory). Both stations aired from the same building and worked together a lot. Erik de Zwart became the new director of Radio 538. In late 2002 Erik de Zwart moved to Talpa Radio International.

In December 2003, Radio 538 was sold to the investment fund Advent International. Lex Harding retained 10% of the shares.

On May 23, 2005 Radio 538 was fully acquired by Talpa by John de Mol and Lex Harding took definitely goodbye. Together with Radio 10 Gold, which already owned by Talpa, Radio 538 was brought under the management of Talpa Radio (since 2006: Talpa Media). Until that moment, Talpa, next to Radio 10 Gold, also Noordzee FM owned. Because it was not allowed under the provisions of the 2003 frequency to two general, possess national commercial radio broadcasters, Talpa was forced to sell Noordzee FM.[8] The Flemish company De Persgroep took Noordzee FM and renamed the station few months later to Q-music. De Persgroep does not have to pay anything for Noordzee FM to Talpa.[9][10]

On October 1, 2007 Radio 538, along with various programs from the television channel Tien was taken over by RTL Nederland. On January 1, 2012 Radio 538 was, like its sister stations Radio 10 Gold and Slam!FM, taken over again by Talpa Media. This was a result of a transaction between RTL Group and Talpa Media, which has been an exchange of shares and sale to the order. RTL Group owned back all shares in RTL Nederland Holding since January 1, 2015, while Talpa Media became again the 100% owner of Radio 538. All this is a result of participation by Talpa Media in SBS Broadcasting.

Sister stations[edit]

TV 538 logo

TV 538 is a television channel which started in 2011 as a TV channel of Radio 538. In addition, the station has a number of digital channels that link to Radio 538, as 53L8, 538NL and 538IBIZA.

See also[edit]


External links[edit]