Radio Disney is making a big switch to digital, unloading all of its 24 stations, with the exception of KDIS-AM 1110 in Los Angeles.
Variety was first to report last year that Disney was planning to sell more of its stations in the U.S. Move comes after Radio Disney realized that only 18% of its listeners access the channels on the radio, opting for other platforms, instead, including the Watch Disney Channel app.
As a result of the sale, 184 positions will be eliminated. The sale of the 23 stations will be completed Sept. 26.
KDIS-AM 1110 will oversee Radio Disney’s national network programming and provide content to partners.
Radio Disney recently partnered with app maker ShowMobile to aggregate stories it tells on social media, and also distributes its content to SiriusXM, Slacker, Aha Radio and TuneIn. Dee’s Entertainment also syndicates Radio Disney to U.S. stations in 30 markets.
It will build out new Radio Disney apps for smartphones and tablets, as well.
“Radio Disney will be increasing investment in both digital distribution platforms and music-centric programming,” Phil Guerini, Radio Disney’s general manager, told staff in a memo on Aug. 13. “These decisions will optimize Radio Disney for long-term growth and better reflect the habits of the consumers we serve — a national audience of kids and families.”
“Radio Disney will increase its investment in both digital distribution platforms and music-centric programming to optimize the network for long-term growth and to better reflect the habits of its listeners, a national audience of kids and families,” the company said.