Once an adman, always an adman. Richard Wheatly has moved on a bit since his days as chairman of Leo Burnett – to become, by the look of it, Britain’s foremost jazz entrepreneur. But he’s still a dab-hand at targeting an audience.
Wheatly, who recently reacquired digital radio station Jazz FM in a management buyout, plans to launch his company on the stock exchange. And what better way to warm up his investment audience than another series of Jazz in the City – a one-hour programme broadcast from 6-7pm every Monday evening? To underline the point, he’s managed to persuade Piers Currie, Aberdeen Asset Management’s marketing chief, to sponsor the programme and Stevie Spring, chief executive of Future, Sir Stuart Rose, formerly executive chairman of M&S, Charles Dunstone, founder of Carphone Warehouse and TalkTalk, Caroline Daniel, FT Weekend Editor and Peter Cruddas, ceo CMC Markets, to appear in it.
Wheatly – himself an accomplished jazz pianist – has already made one fortune from resurrecting Jazz in the mid nineties, floating it, then selling it on to Guardian Media Group for £44.5m six years ago. Clearly he has another one in view.