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BBC World Service, AudioNow ink mobile radio distribution pact

MUMBAI: BBC Afrique and BBC Hausa radio news bulletins are now available to listeners in the US via the call-to-listen service, AudioNow.

The development means further extension of the availability of the multilingual content from BBC World Service on AudioNow’s radio distribution platform, adding to the radio programming from the BBC’s Arabic, Bengali, Burmese, Hindi, Indonesian, Persian, Somali, Swahili and Urdu services already hosted.

US-based French- and Hausa-speakers can now access BBC Afrique and BBC Hausa broadcasts on any mobile device by dialling a dedicated national number. While the service is free to callers in the US, listeners should check their mobile phone contracts for any additional charges.

BBC head of business development for Sub-Saharan Africa, Joachim Harris said, “We are delighted that BBC Afrique and BBC Hausa radio programmes are now available to audiences in the US as a result of our agreement with AudioNow. The BBC has large audiences in Africa to its Hausa and French services. Now, thanks to this very welcome extension of our long-standing relationship with AudioNow, audiences in the US get a new flexible and convenient way to enjoy and benefit from the BBC Hausa and BBC Afrique audio news content.”

The addition of the BBC’s two more African language services to the AudioNow distribution platform builds on the success of the BBC Somali audio programming which draws over one million calls per month in the United States.

BBC Africa Editor, Solomon Mugera said, “This is a significant development in our commitment to serving our audiences wherever they are in the world. It’s a clear demonstration that with the right content in terms of relevance and quality, the audience will find you.”

AudioNow Strategic Partnerships director Alexandra Moe said, “We’re proud to extend the reach of BBC Afrique and BBC Hausa to diaspora audiences here in the US. High-quality news from across Francophone Africa, Nigeria, and beyond, is now available to anyone at any time through a simple telephone call.”