Manx Radio is the National Public Service Broadcaster of the Isle of Man and occupies a very unusual position in broadcasting as it is publicly owned but only part funded by the public purse raising the remainder of its income commercially. The demands of being a National broadcaster, especially in a relatively small commercial market, sit uncomfortably with the business ethos that has to be engendered in any successful commercial venture. So, not surprisingly, a special arrangement has evolved over the experience of many years through which Manx Radio's programme service is funded.
The station sells airtime in the form of spot advertising and sponsorship, just like any other. In fact, when compared with the established United Kingdom stations, Manx Radio's revenue per capita consistently tops the list. Recognising the special responsibilities of a programme schedule with a high speech content, however, higher than any other British commercial station outside the specialist news, talk and sport stations, commercial revenue is supplemented by a public subvention.
In addition to airtime sales, Manx Radio earns revenue from technical services provided by its skilled Engineering Department, from studio-related services to other broadcasters, from website advertising, news syndication and from miscellaneous sales and services.
In broad terms, the cost of running Manx Radio amounts to £2m, of which some 45% comes from the subvention and the remaining 55% from trading.