In a response to the high rate of domestic acts charting in New Zealand, Auckland-based modern rock station Channel Z is changing its format to 100% local content.

In a response to the high rate of domestic acts charting in New Zealand, Auckland-based modern rock station Channel Z is changing its format to 100% local content.

The modern rock station relaunches Feb. 6 with a new name, Kiwi.

The station will broadcast on Channel Z's three existing frequencies in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch. It is targeting a 15-49 demographic with a playlist reflecting current domestic acts such as Brooke Fraser, Scribe and Dei Hamo, as well as those from the past.

Program director Grant Hislop says the station will air a "broad mix" of genres alongside a number of specialist hip-hop and rock shows.

Sony BMG Entertainment New Zealand managing director Michael Bradshaw says that while the launch is "a testament to the amount of good local music around," Channel Z's low audience share (about 1.6%, according to Hislop) means that the number of people hearing local artists will not rise significantly at the outset.

Universal Music New Zealand managing director Adam Holt agrees. "Good on them for taking a [chance], but Channel Z was already about 40% New Zealand music, so you have to put the impact in perspective."

Kiwi is ultimately targeting a 3%-4% share, Hislop says.

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