'At risk' jobs saved at Derbyshire radio station following £125,000 investment

A total of 12 ‘at risk’ jobs have been saved at a Derbyshire radio station, after the broadcaster received £125,000 from the Business Enterprise Fund.

Monday, 28th June 2021, 9:33 am

Imagine Radio Peak District, based in Chapel-en-le-Frith, have safeguarded a dozen roles at the station which would otherwise have been made redundant – following investment from the group which provides loans to help businesses grow.

The radio station which was previously known as High Peak Radio received the cash injection from the Business Enterprise Fund (BEF), who work as a delivery partner for the Government’s Start Up Loans Programme aimed at supporting emerging businesses.

Directors of Like Media Group, which owns the Imagine radio stations in the North West and Like Radio, Ian and Ryan Davies, have worked within the radio broadcasting industry for the majority of their careers.

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Matt Wood, investment manager at the Business Enterprise Fund (BEF).

Ian, who joined the sector in 1989, was previously a DJ, before becoming a manager and then radio station director, while Ryan has held similar positions after starting his broadcast journey in 2010.

The pair both have some degree of ownership in a range of broadcasting platforms which broadcast exclusively on DAB and are responsible for the development and application of DAB licenses along with the management of cloud technology platforms.

Ian and Ryan took ownership of Derbyshire’s High Peak Radio in June 2019 but said they could ‘not have possibly foreseen the crisis on the horizon’ when the Covid-19 crisis first hit in February last year.

The pandemic had a ‘dramatic’ financial effect on the radio station, which relies on advertising, as national and local lockdowns followed and most of the companies who advertised with the broadcaster ceased trading or were forced to close.

Ryan Davies, director said: "The loan from the Business Enterprise Fund has allowed us to completely transform our business and bring in new digital opportunities for customers.

"A new streamlined way of working allows us to grow for the future and ensure we are in a good place for the future."

Investment manager at BEF Matt Wood added: "It was a pleasure working with the High Peak Radio management team to deliver the funding they needed to transform their operation and safeguard jobs.

"The business is set for strong growth and will continue to serve the local community for years to come."

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