PARIS�Broadcasters from across Europe have come together to form an Alliance to promote digital radio.
Founders of the European Digital Radio Alliance at their meeting in Paris, Left to right: Mariano Tschuor (SRG SSR), Edita Kudl�cov� (Czech Radio), Willi Schreiner (Die Neue Welle), James Rea (Global) Heinz-Deiter Sommer (ARD), Willi Steul (Deutschlandradio), Wolfgang Struber (Radio Arabella), Helen Boaden (BBC), Marc Savary (SRG SSR), Steve Parkinson (Bauer), Jan Westerhof (NPO), Francis Goffin (RTBF), Graham Ellis (BBC), Graham Dixon (EBU), Marius Lillelien (NRK), Jean Philip De Tender (EBU).
The agreement was reached by commercial and public service radio leaders in Paris this week.�The new alliance was formed by 12 companies that in total operate more than 300 radio stations and reach more than 130 million listeners. Meeting at the annual Radiodays Europe conference they elected the Director of BBC Radio, Helen Boaden, as the first President of the European Digital Radio Alliance (ERDA).
�Members of the Alliance are sending a clear signal that they share a commitment to making DAB radio the predominant means of distribution in their areas of operation. Digital radio offers great advantages to listeners but for too long we have seen it as a national issue. That fragmented approach has been holding back investment. As DAB becomes the natural choice for consumers we want Europe to embrace it and manufacturers to offer DAB alongside FM in sets and vehicles, just as they did for medium-wave and FM, and at a price which is attractive to the consumer. That will only happen if people see we are united in our determination to bring consumers the benefits of digital radio. The Alliance is here to provide that united front and to speak with one voice to manufacturers, governments and regulators,� said Boaden.
The 12 members of the European Digital Radio Alliance are: ARD; Deutschlandradio; Die Neue Welle; Global; The BBC; Bauer Media Group; NRK; NPO; RTBF; SRG SSR; Czech Radio; and, Radio Arabella.� Members of the Alliance operate radio stations in the Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland and the UK.
The steering group of the Alliance comprises Helen Boaden (BBC, chair), Travis Baxter (Bauer Media Group), Francis Goffin (RTBF), Helwin Lesch (ARD), Marius Lillelien (NRK). �
The ERDA established in partnership with the European Broadcasting Union and is based at the Union�s headquarters at L'Ancienne-Route 17A, 1218 Le Grand-Saconnex, Switzerland.