|Headquarters||Redruth, Cornwall, UK|
The UKRD Group Ltd was a British media company that owned 15 commercial radio stations in the United Kingdom. The name originates from UK Radio Developments. Since its acquisition in March 2019, it has been run as a subsidiary of Bauer Radio.
Formed on 22 August 1990 as a company to invest in commercial stations following the relaxation of station ownership laws, its first investment was a stake in Cornwall's Pirate FM 102, which was designed and launched by former County Sound boss Mike Powell who, after leaving County Sound, had formed Infinity Radio. Shortly after the launch, Infinity Radio merged with UK Radio Developments and Powell became CEO of the embryonic UKRD Group. Under Powell's leadership, UKRD became one of the fastest growing private radio groups in the UK, rapidly adding Star FM in Slough and winning the Guildford radio franchise which gave birth to 96.4 The Eagle, the new County Sound (a recreation of the original Guildford commercial station of the same name) and Delta Radio. Since then it has acquired several more stations, and launched further stations on the issue of new local licences.
UKRD acquired a significant minority share-holding in Faze FM, which ran Kiss 102 in Manchester and Kiss 105 in Yorkshire. The stations had a branding deal with EMAP's Kiss FM, London. UKRD sold its interests in the Kiss stations in 1997 to the Chrysalis Group, who added them to its Galaxy Radio network. It also had a helping hand in the launch of South Hams Radio in December 1999, which was closed in 2009 to make way for Heart.
In 2010, UKRD was ranked 27th in the Sunday Times Best Companies to Work For (SMEs) and was ranked 1st in the same category every year between 2011 and 2014.
Stations previously owned by UKRD Group
Prior to their sale to Bauer Radio, UKRD owned the following stations:
- Eagle Radio
- Eagle 70s
- Eagle 80s
- Encore Radio
- Escape to Cornwall
- KL.FM 96.7
- Minster FM
- Mix 96
- Pirate FM 102
- Pirate 70s
- Spire FM
- Spirit FM
- Stray FM
- Wessex FM
- Yorkshire Coast Radio
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