Estonian company scoops up Radio SWH

Ireland's Communicorp Group has sold popular radio station SWH to the Estonian-based entertainment company Cinamon, known for its multiplex movie theaters, reported LSM's Russian-language sister portal rus.lsm.lv on Thursday.

The Communicorp Group previously controlled all the shares in Radio SWH, which have been sold to Cinamon Holding, according to Ireland's national broadcaster Raidió Teilifís Éireann (RTE). The sum of the deal has not been disclosed.

A long-term head of the radio, Jānis Šipkēvičs, told that the station was bought by the management of Radio SWH with the help of a strategical investor. 

Jānis Šipkēvičs, along with commercial director Filips Rubenis and the investor Cinamon group have become the new owners of SWH.

The deal is effective immediately.

Commenting on the sale, Group CEO of Communicorp Gervaise Slowey said: “We are privileged to be part of the history of SWH, one of Latvia's greatest indigenous businesses. Communicorp is proud to have played its part in building the leading commercial radio group in the country. We would like to wish Cinamon on-going success”.

There are five radio stations owned by Radio SWH — SWH and SWH Rock, which broadcast in Latvian, as well as SWH Gold and Spin FM that broadcast both in Latvian and Russian. 

As Rus.lsm.lv discovered, the LETA news archive reports that on August 28 this year, Communicorp Group Limited increased the stock capital of AS Radio SWH Latvia to €2.536m. The company declined to comment this step. Before, the stock capital of the company was €663,650. After reporting losses for a straight five years, the company posted a profit of €109,342 last year. 

Cinamon was sold to a Russian investor in summer 2014, according to the Estonian business portal dv.ee. 

The company is represented in Latvia at least since 2008 when an 8-screen movie theater was opened at the Alfa shopping mall. Cinamon also owns movie theaters in the Estonian city of Tartu and in Lithuanian Kaunas. 

According to the media pollster TNS, judging by the respondents' time spent listening to a particular station, the top 10 Latvian radio stations looked like this on August 2015. 

20,4% Latvijas Radio-2
10,8% Radio Skonto
 9,6% Latvijas Radio-1
 6,0% Radio SWH
 5,0% Eiropas Hitu Radio
 4,7% Star FM
 4,7% Латвийское радио-4
 3,0% Хиты России/Русское радио
 2,9% Retro FM
 2,8% TOP Radio

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