Deal off the ground for Style 96.5 FM

Cayman radio station Style 96.5 FM is the newest member of the dms Broadcasting media family.

Mr. Martins

Mr. Martins

The Information & Communication Technology Authority board has approved the assignment of Style’s licence to dms.

Style 96.5, launched in July, 2004, was Cayman’s ninth radio station and operated by Panorama Productions.

Former owner Dave Martins said the decision to sell came when he and co-owner, wife Angela, realized they didn’t have enough time to run the station and meet their other commitments.

‘We were originally under the impression we had enough time to run the station. But my involvement with Pirates Week, and my wife’s role as Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education meant we were faced with too much on our plates,’ he said.

Mr. Martins says Panorama got an offer from dms that fit their needs and, while they knew selling was the right move, the decision was bittersweet.

‘We’re very happy that we were able to run Style in the way we wanted to, which was to present a station with a wide range of music, a focus on local artists and regional outreach covering various issues that mattered to Caymanians,’ he said.

‘It would be nice to have held on to it but we knew it was time to move on.’

Both Mr. Martins and dms have made efforts to accommodate former Style employees. Several staff have already gone over to dms, some have gone back home to Trinidad and two have gone on to find employment elsewhere in Grand Cayman.

Don Seymour, president of dms Organization Ltd, the parent company for dms Broadcasting is pleased with the decision despite some local opposition.

‘From the beginning, we placed our trust and confidence in the regulatory process and ignored the negative actions and outmoded ideas of our competitors which sought to impede the free market and limit consumer choices,’ he said.

‘We are proud that our actions have catalyzed positive changes in the marketplace. Our team is now energized to complete the acquisition of Style 96.5 FM and bring Cayman’s consumers yet another new dimension in radio.’

Greg van Koughnet of the ICTA says that while the license transfer has been approved, some provisions have been included in the new assignment.

‘The present antenna location and effective radiated power must be maintained, and can’t be changed unless a further application to do so has been approved by the ICTA,’ he said.

‘Furthermore, the frequency of 96.5MHZ is subject to change, if initiatives to harmonize other assigned frequencies go forward.’

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