Botswana: DJ Fresh Routes for Own Radio Station

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Botswana man, South African based radio DJ, club DJ and record maker is reported to be eyeing a radio licence in Johannesburg which if successful would see the man known as Top Dawg, owning his own radio station. The Daily Business says DJ Fresh, Thato Sikwane the DJ now working for 5FM, is joining a consortium applying for a broadcasting licence for a new Johannesburg station.

Should broadcasting regulator Icasa green-light the bid, the Big Dawg's roar will shake up the radio market as radically as it did when the first indie licences were handed out in 1997.

"It would mean me moving to the new station's breakfast show," Sikwane admits, "but that's not decided yet. I'm not doing it to make money. If that was my motivation I could have moved to Highveld Stereo some time ago", the South African publication reported.

DJ Fresh , who cut his teeth in radio presenting with RB2 in the 90s, is further quoted as saying, "For me, the excitement of being with a new station backed by substantial business and radio experience is to have a strong voice in the boardroom as well as the studio."

DJ Fresh is also quoted as saying that he is chasing World Cup 2010 deals from potential international brands wishing to be associated with his music brand. "If just one big-name DJ or producer or advertiser picks up on one of our mixes as an anthem for the 2010 World Cup, sales will be huge," the Daily Business says.

During the festive season DJ Fresh clinched an advertising deal promoting Nintendo's commercial for the holiday season. Since relocating to South Africa, DJ Fresh has become known for his House mixes, which have now sold over a million copies from 23 album mixes.

DJ Fresh joined Johannesburg's edgy new YFM at start-up in 1997. Its daily play list of kwaito, hip-hop, R&B and dance music snagged a million listeners a day, mostly from SABC stations with dated formats, the business daily reports.

The Business Daily reports that Sikwane has integrated his national audience since 2006; his radio show is up 15% a year due to a rise of 45% in black listenership with no loss of white fans. "Advertisers are loving it, he agrees, with a Tom Tom endorsement just concluded and a Touareg parked outside from his Volkswagen sponsorship", the report says.

Mmegi 21st January 2010