Digital radio start ups are usually either brand extensions of current radio stations or so niche that they don't cater to my mainstream ears.
However on November 4th, Share Radio launched on the London 3 DAB multiplex. I was expecting to hear a Bloomberg style rolling business news format throughout the day, yet this radio station has found it's niche between providing hard business news and providing output for those who haven't got a clue about finance like yours truly who got an F in GCSE Maths, yet isn't dumbed down broadcasting.
Features such as explaining the jargon in business bring the world of finance closer to average people who don't have a clue about business, while business news is explained in a way which makes the information relevant.
Morning Money, the breakfast show presented by unknown Danish presenter Sandra Kilhof is as you expect a solid programme of business news, yet as mentioned above doesn't exclude those who don't work in the City or Canary Wharf.
It then gets a bit lighter from 9am when Consuming Issues with BBC London 94.9 sports reporter Georgie Frost takes over. Along with her producer Annie Weston, they take a look at issues which affect the average person while keeping up to date with breaking business news. They even have a Youth business slot on Friday mornings with blogger Iona Blair which looks at the issues affecting young people and students with their finances. Interactivity is key with this programme when they ask the listener to pose questions, set the news agenda or my favourite part, the light questions such as what have you lost while travelling.
Business broadcasting legend Ed Mitchell (EBN/CNBC/ITN) takes over at 1pm with Investment Perspectives. This is Ed's first gig since his much publicised issues that affected him a few years back.
One of his features looks at ethical business which will help people like me understand that not all investors are in it for the greed, but ensure that a company works in an ethical manner.
The evening show (5-9) with Simon Rose is similar to Morning Money, but is not as straight laced with lighter discussion regarding the business stories of the day.
For a station that didn't even have a studio four months ago, the quality of the programming is on a par with 5 Live and LBC, although of course there are some small issues which I'm sure they'll sort out in due course.
News bulletin copy is excellent, but the delivery could be improved, that could be down to lack of piloting or inexperience. Weekend shows are hard to find. I found a 'Desert Island Discs' type programme on Saturday afternoon. There's apparently other weekend shows, but bar the music show, the weekends I found to be repeats of programming from the week.
Share Radio is also bidding for the 963/972 AM licence for the London area and plan to go national on DAB at some point in the future.
I wish these guys the best for the future as this is one station which is finally providing a much needed under served viable format which may just break even.