Grupo ACIR readies a Mickey-free relaunch of its pop stations
A story by Ray Zubiri in 24 Horas Puebla on December 8 broke a story that had not emerged in the media up to that point: that Disney and Grupo ACIR were breaking up, and ACIR was preparing to relaunch its pop stations that had been Radio Disney under a new brand in 2020. Furthermore, Grupo ORO’s XHECD-FM 92.9 was rumored as the new home of Radio Disney in Puebla.
Zubiri says that the partnership with Disney, which launched in the summer of 2013 and came to supplant Digital as ACIR’s pop brand, was not sitting well at Montes Pirineos because Disney came out better than ACIR at the end of the day.
El Confesionario - Radio Disney se va del 90.1 FM
El ConfesionarioPor: Ray Zubiri / @RayZubiri Pues esta semana arrancamos con una noticia que de verdad me paro de…
It was not certain at the time whether this was a national or local move, though knowing ACIR, the former seemed likely. El Boy cleared that up on the 17th:
Now, we’re getting a look at the post-Disney era of ACIR pop radio, which will begin at noon on January 7, 2020, on 10 ACIR stations. It’s called Match (matchmx.fm), and you’ll be able to hear it on these stations:
- XHPOP-FM 99.3 Mexico City
- XHCIA-FM 91.7 Colima
- XHCNA-FM 100.1 Culiacán
- XHEMIA-FM 90.3 Guadalajara
- XHFEM-FM 99.5 Hermosillo
- XHPQ-FM 97.5 León
- XHMAT-FM 99.5 Mazatlán
- XHMO-FM 93.9 Morelia
- XHRS-FM 90.1 Puebla
- XHME-FM 89.5 Puerto Vallarta
Notably, a couple of the ex-Disney stations aren’t staying in the format. One is XHOK-FM 90.9 in Monterrey, Grupo ACIR’s lone station in town, which joins the company’s Amor network — in fact, you can already find it as Amor 90.9 on iHeartRadio. Amor is without a doubt ACIR’s lead offering in most of its cities. Unlike in Guadalajara, where ACIR already had an FM to work with when it built its second-wave FM station, XHOK is all they have.
The other is XHMAR-FM 98.5 in Acapulco. It’s clearly going somewhere different: it’s listed as English pop by iHeartRadio with this very temporary logo. It’s worth noting that when these stations were Radio Disney, they were the only ACIR stations not on iHeart:
Match also lit up its Twitter account @MatchMxFM at midnight:
The question now: will Match incentivize former Radio Disney listeners to swipe right, particularly in markets where Disney returns on a competing station if they go that route?