Trout leaves Impact as role is scrapped in effort to cut costs

Jason Trout has left his position as the managing director of The Wireless Group's sales house, Impact, after his role was scrapped. His responsibilities will be assumed by Ashley MacKenzie, the son of the group's chairman, Kelvin MacKenzie.

The company, which owns talkSPORT radio, is believed to have axed Trout's position in an effort to cut costs. Ashley MacKenzie will now oversee the running of Impact in addition to his existing duties as the managing director of TWG's Independent Local Radio division.

Trout was promoted from Impact sales director to the managing director last November following the shock departure of the division's first managing director, Tim Bleakley. Before that, Trout was the deputy sales director for Talk Radio.

Impact was launched as the TWG's first in-house sales company in October 2000, to sell national and regional airtime across the company's stations.

TWG experienced tough market conditions last year, posting a pre-tax loss of £10 million, a figure which would have been more severe had it not been for the £25.5 million sale of Scot FM to the Guardian Media Group. TWG also sold its south-coast radio station, Wave105FM, to Scottish Radio Holdings for £18.5 million.

As well as talkSPORT, TWG owns a host of local stations across the UK, including Big AM, Imagine FM, Lite AM and The Pulse. TalkSPORT hit the headlines last year after becoming the first national radio brand to withdraw its support for the Radio Advertising Bureau.

Nobody at TWG was available for comment as Campaign went to press.

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