There were street protests when North West Radio was taken off air and the licence awarded to Ocean FM.
But the company behind NWR – then Ireland’s most popular local radio station – is bidding to win it back under the new name Coast FM.
It already operates the successful Mid-West Radio.
Coast FM spokesman Tommy Marren said: “We’re interested in getting our licence back.
“We have conducted extensive market research through Red C and believe there’s an appetite for change.”
The licence for north Donegal will see a battle between Highland Radio and DLFM, which is headed by former Highland stalwart Charlie Collins.
It will go to an oral hearing in early March.
The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland will decide shortly if the Coast FM v Ocean FM battle should also go to an oral hearing.
Sources say that is also “highly likely”.