Indianapolis… Emmis Communications Corporation (Nasdaq: EMMS) today announced that the company has gained the necessary approvals and has completed six of its 16 television station transactions. Emmis expects to complete three additional transactions early next week. Sale agreements for the nine stations were originally announced Aug. 22.
Today, Gray Television (NYSE: GTN; GTN.A) completed its purchase of WSAZ-TV (Ch. 3, NBC affiliate) in Huntington/Charleston, W.Va., for $186 million.
Also today, LIN TV Corp (NYSE: TVL) completed its purchase of WALA-TV (Ch. 10, Fox affiliate) in Mobile, Ala./Pensacola, Fla.; WTHI-TV (Ch. 10, CBS affiliate) in Terre Haute, Ind.; WLUK-TV (Ch. 11, Fox affiliate) in Green Bay, Wis.; and KRQE-TV (Ch. 13, CBS affiliate) in Albuquerque, New Mexico, plus regional satellite stations. Because FCC license renewal is still pending, a fifth station, WBPG-TV (Ch. 55, WB affiliate) in Mobile, Ala./Pensacola, Fla., will be operated under a Local Programming and Marketing Agreement, which begins today. The sale price for the five stations is $260 million.
The necessary approvals have also been received for Journal Communications, Inc.’s (NYSE: JRN) purchase of WFTX-TV (Ch. 4, Fox affiliate) in Fort Myers, Fla. and KGUN-TV (Ch. 9, ABC affiliate) in Tucson, Ariz. Journal will also acquire certain assets of KMTV-TV (Ch. 3, CBS affiliate) in Omaha, Neb. and will operate KMTV under a Local Programming and Marketing Agreement, which will begin effective upon the closing of the sale of WFTX and KGUN and certain assets of KMTV. The sale price for the three stations is $235 million. The transaction is expected to close in the next week.
Emmis will use the net proceeds to repay outstanding indebtedness.
On Sept. 29 Emmis announced the sale of four additional TV stations – KOIN-TV (Ch. 6, CBS affiliate) in Portland, Ore.; KHON-TV (Ch. 2, Fox affiliate) in Honolulu; KSNW-TV (Ch. 3, NBC affiliate) in Wichita, Kan.; and KSNT-TV (Ch. 27, NBC affiliate) in Topeka, Kan. – to affiliates of the Blackstone Group and SJL Broadcast for a purchase price of $259 million. That transaction awaits FCC approval.
No announcements have been made regarding Emmis’ three remaining stations: KGMB-TV (Ch. 9, CBS affiliate) in Honolulu, WVUE-TV (Ch. 8, Fox affiliate) in New Orleans or WKCF-TV (Ch. 18, WB affiliate) in Orlando.
Emmis Communications – Great Media, Great People, Great Service® (www.emmis.com)
Emmis is an Indianapolis-based diversified media firm with radio broadcasting, television broadcasting and magazine publishing operations. Emmis owns 23 FM and 2 AM domestic radio stations serving the nation’s largest markets of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago as well as Phoenix, St. Louis, Austin, Indianapolis and Terre Haute, IN. In addition, Emmis owns a radio network, international radio stations, regional and specialty magazines and ancillary businesses in broadcast sales and book publishing.