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Joe Dwek joins the Laser team

by RadioToday UK
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Laser Broadcasting has strengthened its board with the appointment of Joe Dwek CBE.

Joe Dwek has been a keen observer of the UK radio industry for over a decade and joins Laser at a time when it is in the final stages of completing the first phase of a nationwide acquisition strategy. Eight acquisition targets have already been identified of which four have signed heads of terms. Dwek who has been impressed by Laser?s ?vision and the energy of its team? has a wealth of experience in industry and business.

He has an impressive track record in business, with his most notable success being during his tenure as Chairman and Managing Director of FTSE 200 company Bodycote International (1972-1996), where he took the company?s market capitalisation from just ?3m in 1972 to circa ?1.4 bn in 1998, when he retired. Joe Dwek is an energetic businessman and is currently Chairman of Worthington Group Plc and a Director of Mercury Recycling Plc (AIM listed). He is also a director City Invoice Finance Limited and the Opal Property Group.

He is a board member of the North West Development Agency. His public service includes being a member of the North West Advisory Board to the Department of Trade and Industry between 1982-1992, and in 2003 he was appointed to the DTI Environmental Innovations Advisory Group. Laser Broadcasting was formed in 2002 after its founder experienced radio executive Nigel Reeve identified a commercial opportunity to exploit a niche market in the commercial radio industry. UK radio advertising, he says, currently takes just six percent of the total advertising spend in the UK, whilst figures in the United States, France and Australia for example reveal that the average radio advertising take is between 8-10 per cent.

Reeve has consistently predicted over the past decade that commercial radio audiences in the UK would fall due to the policy of radio groups moving away from their traditional local markets ? with the consequent decline in advertising spend. He believes this has created a new gap in the market and a new opportunity for an experienced team such as Laser to rebuild local heritage radio brands and drive increased value into existing and new stations. Reeve and Director of Development Alan Mullett have solid experience of generating shareholder value from local radio markets. In fact experience underpins the offering of the Laser Broadcasting board.

For the Laser team is in sharp contrast to the rest of the industry where the average age of current station management is often below thirty years of age. Laser is working on a twin strategy. It plans to purchase loss-making stations and use its skills to turn them into profitable business while at the same time bidding for relevant new licences as they become available.

Nigel Reeve, Chief Executive Officer of Laser Broadcasting Ltd commented: ?Joe Dwek is one of the most respected businessman in the country and brings a depth of experience and knowledge to our board that will be invaluable. ?To attract a well known name of his calibre and track record to join our board of highly skilled and experienced radio professionals, is a clear sign to the industry that we intend to be a serious player. ?Joe will provide a fresh perspective to our business and be an important force in our aim to create an opportunity to drive increased value into existing and new radio stations,? he added.

Joe Dwek commented: ?This is a very good proposition and I want to help it succeed.? ?The most important thing is that they have a vision where they want to take the business and how they want to run it, which attracted me. The people have a good track record, energy and commitment. ?I have a lot of experience in running a diverse range of businesses and I am excited by the potential for Laser. ?I believe there is a greater opportunity for bright people to come into the radio industry and transform it. In my opinion Laser has that ability and from what I can see the returns will be pretty good for the shareholders.?

Laser Broadcasting are an acquisitive specialist radio management company currently identifying existing stations and radio licenses in order to build a nationwide portfolio of stations.

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