GCap bolsters interactive offer

GCap Interactive division to combine use of traditional and new-media channels for key radio brands.

GCap Media is creating a new unit to focus on developing its brands in areas outside of traditional analogue radio.

Called GCap Interactive, the division will be led by Paul Sigaloff, who takes the role of head of interactive. Sigaloff joined GCap three months ago from Channel 4.

GCap has merged its digital, new-media and customer relationship management teams to create the new unit, which will work on moving key radio brands, such as Capital Radio, Xfm, Classic FM and Choice FM, into new-media channels.

Personalised radio content is one area that GCap Interactive will be exploring. Listeners of stations such as Classic FM will be able to build their own content, a service it has tested with its Mi-Xfm product.

GCap Interactive will also work to ensure that interactive services are being promoted on-air and will create standalone websites offering content that differs to that which is found on the radio stations. It will promote the services to media agencies.

Myles Anderson, who joined GCap from Orange, will be responsible for all revenues outside of traditional promotions and advertising in his role as the head of e-commerce and marketing partnerships.

Other members of the senior GCap Interactive team include the head of editorial, Tom Laidlow, the head of content, Ashley Middleton, and the head of operations, Jane Thompson.

Sigaloff said: "We have a new vision of becoming the number-one destination for personalised music entertainment. GCap already has 16.5 million weekly listeners, and has converted 8 per cent into online users, so the aim is to tap into this and convert more into online users."

He added that GCap Interactive would attempt to build the demand from advertisers for cross-media activity by using new-media channels alongside traditional spot advertising and promotions.

GCap has appointed staff with backgrounds in TV, radio and print in a bid to push this cross-media potential.

The creation of GCap Interactive follows the news two weeks ago that Fru Hazlitt, the former Virgin Radio chief executive, is joining the radio group as the managing director of GCap London. Part of her task will be to work with the GCap board on increasing its revenues from non-traditional sources.

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