KUCHING, Nov 28 — Tea FM, Sarawak’s first privately-owned Chinese radio station, aims to fill the void in east Malaysia with more local news and entertainment content.
A joint venture between KTS Group and Redberry Group, the station started broadcasting here and in Kota Kinabalu on Aug 1 this year. It aims to cover all major towns in the two states in phases, with Sibu next in the pipeline.
Tea FM director Chia Chiew Boon said response from listeners has been very encouraging.
“There is a demand for more local news and programmes with a local flavour. The Chinese stations that are broadcasting from the Peninsular now have limited east Malaysian content and this is where Tea FM comes in,” he said.
Chia said the station aims to be an up-to-date source of information and news, and realising that most Chinese listeners in Sarawak and Sabah were also fluent in English, the station had dedicated several hours a day to English programmes.
Besides broadcasting in Kuching on FM102.7 and in Kota Kinabalu on FM102.8, Chia said listeners could also tune in through its Tea FM android app and soon, the Internet.
With a roster of young DJs, who are all from Sarawak, Tea FM, located on the 10th floor of Crown Towers at Jalan Padungan, stays on top of the current trends with its breezy and listener-friendly programming.
Programme manager Jean Lai said while the station was being enjoyed by a broad audience, its content was targetted at teenagers and young executives.
“Where music is concerned, we understand their taste and our playlist include K-pop, which is very popular,” she said.
Asked how the name of the station was conceived, Lai said: “Actually, it was mooted by Datuk Henry Lau (KTS Group chief executive officer and managing director), who saw that our people liked to go to coffee shops during their free time and lim teh (‘have tea’ in Hokkien).”
From 6am to 10am, Tea FM’s “Morning Beat” segment features traffic reports and music to start the day.
Then from 10am to noon, the “Music Playstation” brings listeners various hit songs, followed by the “Mid-Day Breakie” from noon to 4pm that shares useful tips on work, health and lifestyle.
The “Cruisin’ Mix” from 4pm to 7pm, entertains listeners through the peak hours.
From 7pm to 8pm, the station airs “Music Pod”, followed by “On The Beat” that broadcasts different genres of English songs from 8pm to 11pm.
This is followed by “Music Back 2 Back” featuring non-stop music from 11pm to 6am.