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Spectrum given green light to revamp its service

London's Spectrum Radio has been allowed to completely revamp its service and target new audiences.

Spectrum originally targeted ethnic minority communities via its AM frequency, but Ofcom's approval will allow to change track completely, allowing it effectively launch a rival to LBC and other speech stations in the capital with "Spectrum Talk".

Following a request by the broadcaster that triggered a consultation exercise by Ofcom in the summer, Spectrum Radio will now become a broad-based 24 hour speech service for "Londoners of all backgrounds and origins, focussing on business and finance, sport, entertainment, current affairs and essential information."

Back in July, Spectrum explained how new ways of listening via DAB and online had overtaken the station's traditional role in providing a service to minorities, with several stations on London DAB providing full-time services to individual minority groups.

In approving the changes, Ofcom said:
"We recognise that the proposed change is an extensive one, hence our decision to consult on the proposal. However, as already noted, Spectrum Radio launched some 27 years ago, when the market environment and level of competition was very different than it is today. Therefore, we believe that the Licensee should have flexibility to respond to changes in the market, and that the considerations taken into account in making that original award should not be a factor in our decision now."