Armstrong Welcomes Competition – does NPR?

Bloomberg Business Radio Invades Turf

npr_bostonbusinessradio_BloombergCompetition is a good thing – right?  Well let’s see what unfolds for WRKO’s  Barry Armstrong and his show The Financial Exchange on the Money Matters network.  It’s not only Armstrong’s Money Matters and its affiliate shows and stations that should be concerned but how about our friends over at NPR – They are in the hot seat now as well.  What I am especially curious to see is if Bloomberg can break the cycle of failed AM all business programming 150, 590 and 1060 all had very short life spans.

Starting tomorrow the listening landscape for Boston Business Radio listeners changes dramatically when Bloomberg enters the arena!  We will see how everything shakes out once the ratings book for the next quarter are released.  Shake hands and come out talking!


Here are more interesting posts, POV and coverage on Bloomberg’s addition to the Boston Business Radio scene – 

Boston Radio Watch

New biz news format replacing comedy on AM 1200
Come midnight on Friday(3/1) Matty’s Comedy format on WXKS/Comedy 1200 won’t be laughing very hard. . The Clear Channel-owned station will flip to business news format airing Bloomberg Radio. WXKS-AM launched “Matty’s Comedy 1200” last August when it ditched a Talk 1200 format after a year and a half. The “Matty” came from sister CHR-Top40 morning host Matty Siegel who supposedly chose the content to make people laugh. Those who still want to hear comedy will need to get an HD Radio receiver and listen on the HD2 channel of WJMN/Jamn 94-5, according to Clear Channel Boston
Boston has a short-lived history of AM stations with an all-business formats on 1150, 590 and 1060.  WBNW 1120/Money Matters Radio has been airing a mix of local finance talk shows and Bloomberg Radio(at night and overnight) since mid 1990’s, but the Needham-based station doesn’t have the range of 1200’s 50,000-watt signal. Money Matters Radio does produce local financial show “The Financial Exchange” which is also heard on WRKO 680 from 9am to 11am weekdays. There are some whipsers that the show may move from 680 to the new Bloomberg 1200 station.

Boston Inno-

In the battle for local radio bragging rights in Boston, NPR’s WBUR has been winning the war against itself for far too long.

Starting March 1, Bloomberg Radio, a 24-hour station spouting the publication’s signature business news and financial information, will be airing its programming on Clear Channel’s WXKS radio station to the Hub market, touting itself as “the only all business and financial news radio station available throughout Boston, offering Bloomberg’s signature programming and up-to-date market coverage, in addition to local news, traffic, weather and sports.”

“We’re excited about expanding Bloomberg Radio into Boston, an important market for those who manage money, move the markets and shape the innovations of tomorrow,” said Al Mayers, head of Bloomberg Radio, in a statement. “With Bloomberg 1200AM and a signal for those with HD radio on 94.5FM-HD2, Bostonians can tap into the insightful conversations with influential analysts, economists, and business leaders that Bloomberg Radio is known for.”

Bloomberg Radio will be launching in partnership with Bentley University, a business model that seems to work exceedingly well for the Boston University-owned WBUR.

The Waltham-based academic institution will provide Bloomberg Radio with exclusive access to its faculty and staff, and the two entities will co-produce the content. Bentley students will be incorporated in to the programming as well,  including the award-winning Fed Challenge team and student-run Bentley Investment Group.

“We were excited about this collaboration from the start. Bentley is a leading business university and Bloomberg as the leader in business media is a great fit,” said Bentley University President Gloria Larson. “We look forward to working with Bloomberg to provide an informed and innovative view of business to the Boston market.”

Nothing breeds innovation like a healthy dose of competition, so I’ll be eager to see how a disruption to the local airwaves of this magnitude is received here in Boston, and how existing talk and news stations such as CBS’s WBZ and WBUR react.

I’m admittedly intrigued, and a bit fearful, by Bloomberg’s promise to cover local sports as well.

Alex E. Weaver | Boston Inno

Boston Herald

A prominent Hub business radio host said today he will “embrace the competition” Bloomberg Radio will bring starting Friday with the Boston debut of its 24/7 station on WXKS 1200 AM.

“I have a lot of respect for (Bloomberg). I think they’re a top-notch organization and it’ll be interesting,” Barry Armstrong, host of “The Financial Exchange” on WRKO 680 AM, told the Herald. “I think we’ll just continue to grow and try to put on a good show every day.”

Armstrong, founder of The Armstrong Advisory Group, added his show has “a nice headstart” ahead of Bloomberg’s arrival. “The Financial Exchange,” a daily, two-hour show which launched little more than a year ago on WRKO, was preceded by the show “Lunch Money.”

Armstrong said “The Financial Exchange” remains a hit with older listeners, particularly 55-year-old-plus men, a key demographic of the investment community.

“A lot of people say, ‘Who wants to be highly ranked among 55-year-old men?’ You know what, 55-year-old men and women have all the wealth in this country and we do really well there,” he said.

Bloomberg Radio goes live in Boston at 12:01 a.m. Friday. The station will also provide a signal for those with HD radio on 94.5FM-HD2.

Al Mayers, head of Bloomberg Radio and a Melrose native, said yesterday Bloomberg’s 26 Hub journalists, as well as faculty and staff at Bentley University will contribute regular content for shows. The station format will be guest-driven and feature interviews anchored by eight hosts.

WXKS, which is owned by Clear Channel Communications, has gone through several AM formats, including progressive talk and comedy, but the new change won’t affect any employees, officials said. The station’s current programming, “Matty’s Comedy 1200,” will now be offered to listeners on 107.9 WXKS HD2 in Boston.

By Ira Kantor / Boston Herald

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