Another National Brand in Canada As Rogers Preps CityNews Rollout

CityNews City News Rogers Sports Media 680 CFTR Toronto 1130 Vancouver 660 Calgary 95.7 HalifaxRogers Sports & Media has announced it will relaunch five of its News stations in Canada under the CityNews brand this fall.

570 News” CKGL Kitchener, “660 News” CFFR Calgary, “680 News” CFTR Toronto, “News 1130” CKWX Vancouver and “News 95.7” CJNI Halifax will all switch to the new brand. Rogers began the rollout of the “CityNews” identity on radio last December when “1310 News” CIWW Ottawa added a simulcast on 101.1 CKBY Smiths Falls and rebranded as “CityNews 101.1“.

In making the announcement today, the company stated that the audio content from the stations will not change, however it will allow them to combine the digital assets with the news portal and the company’s “City-TV” network.

Rogers states that following the relaunch in Ottawa, the combination of the two websites led to a 31% increase in digital listening and 37% increase in ‘first preference’ choice by local audiences, with the station itself garnering its best ratings since Fall 2013.

Today’s audiences have endless choices on where to get their news. To ensure Canadians continue to easily find the trusted local news and information they have come to rely on from Rogers Sports & Media, this Fall the company is bringing its local news radio stations across the country under the CityNews banner to become a powerhouse local news offering in each market.

This is a change in brand identity only. While the name and branding for each news radio station will be updated, loyal listeners will still get the same great reliable content from 680 NEWS (Toronto), NEWS 1130 (Vancouver), 660 NEWS (Calgary), NEWS 95.7 (Halifax), and 570 NEWS (Kitchener) – including the latest news, traffic and weather, along with the same beloved local on-air personalities.

‘Putting our incredible team and all of our resources behind one brand will help to strongly convey who we are to audiences and advertisers, plus it gives us the opportunity to produce more content for social and digital to better serve each community,’ said Julie Adam, President of News & Entertainment, Rogers Sports & Media. ‘News plays a pivotal role in our organization, providing an essential service for Canadians and we’re excited to make this move to cement our investment in local news. I am so proud of our News team and grateful for everything they do.’

The unified brand approach builds on last year’s successful rebrand of 1310 NEWS (Ottawa), which changed its name to CityNews Ottawa & The Valley and the two local news websites merged into one. This has had a positive effect in the local market, with a 31% increase in digital listening year-over-year and a 37% increase in ‘first preference’ choice by local audiences*. Additionally, yesterday’s Numeris ratings showed that the Ottawa news radio station had its strongest ratings since Fall 2013**.

‘Combining our award-winning news teams builds on the strength and reputation of stations like 680 NEWS and shows our deep commitment to continue delivering the best news to audiences, on any platform, simplifying the choice for consumers with one brand offer,’ said Dave Budge, VP of News & Information, Rogers Sports & Media.

Launching alongside the rebrand will be a new unified CityNews website and app, where consumers can easily find their local news for Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Halifax, and Kitchener.

The branding for each radio station will be unveiled in the Fall, with additional details to be shared in each market at that time.

*Source: Leanstream, January-May 2020/2021; Radio Brand Tracker, January-May 2021
**Source: Numeris Radio Diary, Spring 2021, Ottawa-Gatineau CTRL, A25-54, Reach Plan (Mo-Su 5a-2a)

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