Caren Du Preez, station Manager Star FM

My career started off at BMG Music as a Publishing Assistant.  I then moved to 5fm whereby I obtained the position of Junior Music Compiler and progressively moved up within the ranks until I achieved the position of Programme Manager of the national commercial radio station.

I then did a short internship in New Zealand and upon my return to South Africa, I was recruited by Primedia in a freelance capacity in radio promotions for both 94.7 and 702 respectively.

The SABC then contacted me to see if I would take on the role of Programme Manager METRO FM (the largest Urban Commercial Station in South Africa), on a freelance basis whilst they advertise to fill the vacancy.  I applied for the position and my application was successful!  Upon joining the METRO FM team, target audiences stood at just a little over 5 million (according to SAARF statistic’s).  At the time of my departure, METRO FM reached its highest revenue and listenership targets in the station’s history as the biggest National Broadcaster.

I then consulted as a freelancer for Radio 2000, upon my departure there was an increase in audience figures after a declining trend (according to SAARF stats).

I was then employed at YFM doing Radio Strategy across the board with the main focus on Sales.

In order to complete my 360-degree cycle in radio, I then accepted the position of BRC RAM Programme Director which includes insights into the first-ever mobile study!  My thought process was that this would then give me the ability to create and implement successful strategies from the initial research phase in order to achieve optimal alignment to the corporations set goals.

Q&A with Caren Du Preez

How did you start in the industry?

My music career started as I left school however my radio career started at 19 where I was hired as a temp to do reception work for 5fm.  I turned down a permanent position at another company for this temp work – it was 5fm, these opportunities don’t come around every day.  I was relatively well-liked and the Station manager kept me on until a position became available as a Music Compiler and that’s where it all started!

What do you think the future of the creative industries looks like?

As with all things, the creative industry needs to evolve or get left behind.  We find ourselves living in times of a pandemic, power cuts, water shortages to name but a few things.  We are also social distanced so how do we use this new way of living to work for us?  We need to re-invent ourselves to be relevant, change mindsets and be creative in doing so in order to keep this industry alive

With FWA being hosted in the Mother City, what do you love about Cape Town?

Cape Town has always been my “go-to” place!  The energy is phenomenal, the scenery is like the backdrop of paradise and there is always something happening, something to do.  Adore the place

What would you like to see FAME Week Africa offering in terms of masterclasses and industry discussions?

Definitely a talk/discussion around the future of radio in our current environment

What are some of your career highlights?

METRO FM awards, various humbling experiences with different charity’s, meeting a lot of famous and influential artists both internationally and locally

What is the best piece of advice you can offer someone wanting to get into the industry?

Persevere, believe in yourself and your ability’s and any day is a new day given to reach your goal!

Read more Behind the Scenes interviews here

FAME Week Africa

FAME Week Africa

FWA Connect bringing the Film, Arts, Media and Entertainment sector together by providing creative industry professionals on the African continent with news, trends and in-depth articles.

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