Wireless has officially launched Virgin Radio Groove with an all-day takeover of Virgin Radio.
The event kicked off on the Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky, which was also celebrating its first birthday.
Evans said: "This time last year I returned to my spiritual home at Virgin Radio and I have loved every minute of it since then. We instantly changed commercial radio forever - creating the first ad-break free breakfast show, thanks to our partnership with Sky. We are delighted with the listening figures and our numbers have continued to grow every month. Over the next year our plan for the breakfast show is simple; to continue to give it all we’ve got and have the most possible fun along the way."
The most recent RAJAR listening figures saw the ad break-free show’s reach increase to 1.114m listeners, delivering 4.5m listening hours. It has also featured live sessions from bands including Kaiser Chiefs, Scouting For Girls and Feeder.
Targeted at 30-45 year olds, Virgin Radio Groove is a presenter-led channel focused on rhythmic pop, beginning at 6.30am with the Chris Evans Breakfast Show with Sky, followed by Chris Brooks (10am-2pm), Steve Denyer (2pm-6pm) and Bam (6pm-10pm).
Mike Cass, content director for Virgin Radio, said: “Talk about kicking off 2020 with a bang! New stations, A-list guests, birthday celebrations... it’s all go here at Virgin Radio. We had a phenomenal 2019 with Chris Evans back in the fold and the launch of two stonking new digital stations, Virgin Radio Anthems and Virgin Radio Chilled.
The launch of Virgin Radio Groove highlights Wireless’ confidence in the Virgin Radio offering. It’s a sensational station and that will no doubt fast become the go-to destination for music to make you move.”
Virgin Radio Groove joins Virgin Radio Anthems, which targets 35+ audiences with guitar-led classics from the 60s to the 90s; and Virgin Radio Chilled, targeting 25-44-year-olds with a more laid-back repertoire of singer/songwriters.
The Virgin Radio network (including Virgin Radio, Virgin Radio Anthems and Virgin Radio Chilled) now reaches 1.64m (up 303% year-on-year), delivering 9.2m hours (up 508% year-on-year). Every show in Virgin Radio’s daytime schedule delivered record listening figures.