Bayerischer Rundfunk, BR for short, is Bavaria’s public broadcasting service with around eight million viewers and listeners per day throughout Germany. With ten radio and two television stations, two internationally renowned symphony orchestras, a celebrated chorus and approximately five thousand professionals, we are one of Europe's most respected broadcast institutions. BR operates broadcast centres in Munich and Nuremberg and twenty-two regional offices throughout Bavaria.
BR makes a significant contribution to the ARD network which consists of nine regional public broadcasters and the external service Deutsche Welle. We provide a broad range of exceptional productions for the five main ARD TV channels (available by satellite in most European countries): Das Erste, ARD’s flagship station; the cultural channels ARTE and 3sat; KiKA, the advert-free children’s channel; and the current affairs and documentary channel phoenix. ARD also operates three digital TV channels.
BR has acquired a first-rate international reputation for outstanding feature films and high-quality documentaries. BR productions and co-productions receive more than 100 awards at national and international festivals over the course of a year, among them even the coveted Oscar®. Support for up-and-coming young filmmakers is a particular strength at BR, and the broadcaster has paved the way for many German directors’ first films and thus their careers.
The Bavarian Broadcasting Law sets the following guidelines:
"(The broadcast) should have a democratic orientation and be culturally responsible and be objective in the service of humanity while maintaining the Bavarian character. Bayerischer Rundfunk gives the broadcast audience a complete and objective overview of international, national and Bavarian happenings in all areas of life."
Bavarian Broadcasting Law
Bayerischer Rundfunk was founded in 1949 as a non-profit public broadcaster. It is chartered through the Bavarian State Constitution and the Bavarian Broadcasting Law of 1948. Adherence to the public programming mandate is monitored by a broadcasting council. It consists of representatives of the major organised social groups (e.g. political parties, trade unions, industrial management, churches, youth organisations, universities, cultural institutions). They represent the interests of the public, i.e. of all the listeners and viewers. At the same time, an administrative council monitors the overall activities of BR and its director general.
As a public-service broadcaster, BR's mission is to deliver programmes aimed at society as a whole. In other words: high-quality, independent, non-commercial programming that provides information, gives advice and entertains, and also accommodates the interests of minority groups. All of this is made possible by the license fee, which accounts for the lion's share of our funding. It is currently set at € 17.50 per month. BR also generates revenue from advertising and sponsoring, although this remains a very limited source of income. License fees are payable regardless of equipment or television/radio usage. A simple rule applies to all consumers: One residence, one fee. Companies and institutions also participate in financing the public broadcasting system.
|Staff (permanent/freelance)||approx. 5,100|
|Annual budget||just over €1 bn (2015)|
|Daily listeners/viewers in Germany||approx. 8 m|
|Radio: market share in Bavaria||48.4% (2016)|
|Bavarian Television: market share in Bavaria||7.5% (2015)|
BR is competing successfully in a very challenging environment. Currently, Bavaria has around 70 private radio stations and approx. 20 local/regional commercial TV stations.
Broadcasting international oldies and classic pop focusing on the ‘70s and ‘80s, regional news, entertainment and advice, Bayern 1 reflects today’s Bavaria like no other radio station, helping to make it one of the most popular in the region.
Bayern 2 is our award-winning station for discriminating listeners. Its mix of in-depth news, cultural, factual and educational programming makes it one of the most successful of its kind in central Europe.
Bayern 3 plays chart hits and hot new music by Bavarian newcomers and international superstars. Our presenters provide round-the-clock entertainment – they are witty and amusing, always in tune with our listeners and well-informed about everything that's going on. Be it on the radio, via the app or webstream, at bayern3.de or on social media: Bayern 3 is always live and in the thick of things.
BR-Klassik is Germany's leading radio station for the discerning classical music audience, offering the finest classical and jazz recordings. Listeners enjoy live broadcasts from concert halls and opera houses in Bayreuth, Salzburg or New York plus coverage of cultural events - often in multichannel surround sound. But BR-Klassik is more than a radio station. It is the BR brand for the classics and jazz. BR-Klassik offers classical music events for television and online viewing, two outstanding orchestras, a renowned chorus and the concert series "musica viva". It also includes a CD label.
People tune into B5 aktuell for breaking news. It is one of Germany's most popular news radio stations featuring 15-minute updates, on-the-ground coverage and live sports events, plus business news and reports on the latest developments in politics and culture.
Puls is BR's interactive platform for a younger audience, delivering the latest in politics and pop culture from Bavaria and the whole world. Puls is available for smartphones using the "deinPuls App"; it can also be accessed by digital radio, on TV and the web (deinpuls.de). Puls showcases bands from Bavaria alongside international newcomers and major acts. The station also broadcasts a weekly TV show on BR Fernsehen (BR Television) and by webcast.
Bayern plus plays German popular music and international evergreens from the last five decades. Informative magazines provide news and reports on topics such as health, leisure, culture and sport throughout all of Bavaria's regions and beyond.
Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks (the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra) enjoys an excellent reputation across the globe and ranks among the world's very best. Many of the symphony orchestra's recordings have received prestigious awards. Mariss Jansons is the orchestra's chief conductor.
Münchner Rundfunkorchester (the Munich Radio Orchestra) has developed a very distinct artistic profile, due in no small part to its outstanding versatility. Its repertoire spans opera, musicals, modern spiritual music and film scores. The orchestra is particularly concerned to introduce music to a young audience. Ulf Schirmer is the ensemble's chief conductor.
Our regional channel BR Fernsehen (BR Television) presents Bavaria – and the world beyond – in all their diversity. Its news programme provides information on all the latest developments in Bavaria, Germany and across the globe. BR Television has a long tradition of producing award-winning films, political satire and comedy shows. Programmes featuring a Bavarian outlook and a Bavarian accent make our station unique.
ARD-alpha is the only purely educational TV channel in Germany, featuring shows on school and university education, on vocational training, cutting-edge research and science, and also providing language courses. It includes a large number of programmes on topics of general education. ARD-alpha portrays the world in all its vibrant diversity, bringing home to us how education is more than mere knowledge and skills. ARD-alpha explores, analyzes and explains, helping viewers acquire a better understanding of the world.
The programmes we show are available worldwide thanks to BR.de. Our website delivers information to complement and add to our radio and TV brands. Its multimedia experience helps enhance our broadcast content. The main focus is on news, education, culture, the arts, BR-Klassik – and Bavaria.
Our internet player, the "BR-Mediathek", allows visitors to access or download a broad selection of recent programmes free of charge. It also comes with a live stream tool for our radio and TV channels, Bayerisches Fernsehen (Bavarian Television) and ARD-alpha. Further, BR provides smartphone and tablet apps to access radio and TV broadcasts, as well as the youth-themed platform, Puls.
BR24 is the news brand by BR: accessible 24/7 wherever you happen to be – by smartphone, tablet or PC. In the BR24 app, on the Web at BR24.de and on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram. Competent, reliable and to the point.
The BR24 app can be personalised to become ‘My BR24’. Just chose the topics of your interest and all the latest news will be delivered in your ‘My BR24’ newsfeed. BR24 will always keep you up to date. Our push messaging service ensures you remain abreast of all the breaking news.
Our apps let you follow BR TV shows and radio programmes on smartphones or tablets when out and about.
Besides the BR24 news app, Bayerischer Rundfunk also has apps for BR Radio, Bayern 2, the spoken-word station Bayern 3, the pop music station as well as for the youth programme Puls, and for BR’s TV catch-up service.
BR offers numerous live events throughout Bavaria inviting you to take a seat at fantastic cultural happenings and experience intimate encounters with creative minds. Our musical events bring you up close and personal with your favourite artists. Come together with like-minded enthusiasts at our sporting events and have fun keeping fit. Enjoy entertainment & comedy right in the studio or on set. Take part in current TV and radio productions at important events on the social calendar in Bavaria.
Our radio and TV programmes are available everywhere in Germany (via satellite, cable terrestrial broadcasting or IPTV) and reach most of Europe (via satellite). Through our website BR.de, our information and entertainment content can be accessed almost anywhere in the world.