Indianapolis… Legendary radio station WIBC announces that beginning Jan. 7, 2008, its programming will be separated, with 93.1 FM becoming WIBC-FM and broadcasting a news/talk format, and 1070 AM broadcasting an all-sports format as an ESPN affiliate. The transition period begins at noon Eastern today, when 93.1 FM kicks off “93 Days of Christmas,” a format of holiday music.
The move will allow WIBC to provide the market’s first local news and talk station on FM radio, along with one of the strongest ESPN Radio signals in the nation.
“Our research shows that we can best grow and serve our audiences by splitting and extending our programming,” said Tom Severino, vice president and market manager of Emmis Communications’ Indianapolis radio properties. “WIBC is still going to have the biggest radio news team in the state and the best talk lineup. And as we prepare for the expansion, listeners will have 24-hour holiday music to enjoy, as well as some fun promotions leading up to the split on January 7.”
The change will maximize WIBC’s exclusive broadcasting agreements with the Indianapolis Colts, the Indiana Pacers, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the IRL, and Indiana University Football. “With the power of the 1070 AM signal, more central Indiana sports fans will be able to enjoy ESPN Radio,” said Severino. “When you add our exclusive sports coverage and the best local sports brand in Indianapolis to ESPN’s programming, listeners will get the most comprehensive sports coverage the city has ever had.” Certain sporting events, such as Colts games, the Indy 500 and The Allstate 400 at the Brickyard will continue to be simulcast on 97.1 HANK FM. HANK FM will also continue to air Indiana University Basketball.
Severino also said that RadioNow, the previous format on 93.1 FM, will continue as a secondary High Definition Digital Radio™ channel (93.1HD2) and on the Internet via streaming technology.
********LOCAL MEDIA ADVISORY********
Journalists are welcome to film b-roll of a WIBC broadcast studio between noon and 1 p.m. on Monday, October 8; Emmis Vice President and Indianapolis Market Manager Tom Severino will be available for on-camera interviews after 1 p.m. Call Jodi Wright with requests and questions; 317-684-2971.
WIBC is located in the Emmis Communications building at 40 Monument Circle, Indianapolis.
WIBC – Live. Local. First.
WIBC first hit the airwaves in 1938. Today, it employs the largest radio news team in the state and is the exclusive home of the Indianapolis 500, Brickyard 400, Indianapolis Colts, Indiana Pacers, Indiana Fever and Indiana University Football. In 2006, WIBC received the National Association of Broadcasters’ Marconi Award for Legendary Station of the Year, one of the radio industry’s most coveted honors. In addition to WIBC 1070 AM and 93.1 FM, Emmis’ Indianapolis radio properties include Indy’s soft-rock station, B105.7 (WYXB-FM), anything-country 97.1 HANK FM (WLHK-FM) and Network Indiana.
Emmis Communications – Great Media, Great People, Great Service®
Emmis is an Indianapolis-based diversified media firm with radio broadcasting and magazine publishing operations. Emmis owns 21 FM and two AM domestic radio stations serving the nation’s largest markets of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, as well as St. Louis, Austin, Indianapolis and Terre Haute, Ind. In May 2005, Emmis announced its intent to seek strategic alternatives for its 16 television stations, and has since sold 15 of them. Emmis also owns a radio network, international radio stations, an interactive business and ancillary businesses in broadcast sales.