Media. Virgin Radio becomes Europe 2 again from Sunday

Renamed Virgin Radio in 2008, the music station Europe 2 will return to its original name from Sunday, in the hope of (re) conquering 25-49 year olds who love pop-rock and boosting audiences at their lowest. .

The brand inaugurated in the 1980s will thus resume its rights on New Year’s Eve, « in the continuity » of the changes started in September, explained to AFP Stéphane Bosc, general manager of Lagardère’s musical radios, also owner of Europe 1 and RFM.

Louise Attack and Adé for D-Day

This return to basics was announced this summer by the private group, whose main shareholder is Vivendi, and has since been validated by Arcom.

The station’s morning worker and columnist for Do not touch My TV (C8), Guillaume Genton, will retain control of the Morning without filterwhich succeeded the return to Virgin Tonic by Manu Payet.

He will celebrate the new year on Sunday in the presence of Louise Attaque, Adé or even Pierre de Maere, faithful to the repositioning of pop-rock and the French “new scene” of programming, less focused on electro, according to Stéphane Bosc.

Host Mikl will still be in charge of the station’s evenings, divided into two new shows, Europe 2 Labwith artist interviews, concerts… from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., followed byHappy Rock Hours until midnight.

A historic low in audiences

« We wanted to return to a strong brand that belongs to us » and a « common platform » with Europe 1, explains Stéphane Bosc.

It was also about stopping paying money to Richard Branson’s global empire for the exploitation of the Virgin name, with which Lagardère had hoped to invest in digital and expand its audience.

According to Médiamétrie, over the September-October period, Virgin Radio recorded a historic low, with a cumulative audience (AC) of 2.6% and an audience share (PDA, scrutinized by advertisers) of 1.6 %, far behind the other pop-rock station, RTL 2 (3.9% and 3.2%).

“If we could return to 4.5% of cumulative audience and 3.5% of PDA, I would be delighted,” says Stéphane Bosc. “But it will take time,” he warns, giving a three-year horizon.

At a time when the radio media, weakened by the pandemic and challenged by streaming, is losing listeners, Europe 2 intends, according to him, to refocus on 25-49 year olds, rather than « fishing in a lake empty of fish » by aiming for 13-24.


Back to top button