Fox Buying 7 Sinclair Spinoffs For $910M

It’s adding six Tribune Fox affils and one CW in Miami, Cleveland, Sacramento, Seattle, Denver, Salt Lake City and San Diego. At the same time, Fox is giving Sinclair options to buy two of its stations, CW affiliate WPWR Chicago, where FTS currently has a duopoly, and Fox affiliate KTBC Austin, Texas, for potential prices of approximately $15 million and $160 million, respectively.

 

As expected, 21st Century Fox today said it has signed a definitive agreement with Sinclair Broadcast Group and Tribune Media to acquire seven stations for approximately $910 million. The move is designed to speed federal approval of the $4.6 billion Sinclair-Tribune merger and follows news last month of spinoffs of 23 other stations from that deal.

The transaction will grow Fox Television Stations’ coverage to nearly half of all U.S. households, and its market presence to 19 of the top 20 DMAs, including the addition of key markets that align with Fox’s sports rights.

Today, Fox reaches 36.8% of homes, but, with the FCC’s UHF discount, the figure shrinks to only 24.3%. With the purchase of these seven stations, its reach will grow by 9.1 points to 45.9% but, with the discount, it will still be at just 30.4%, well below the FCC’s 39%cap.

The stations being acquired by 21st Century Fox are:

Station

Market (DMA)

BRAND CONNECTIONS

Affiliation

KCPQ

Seattle (12)

Fox

WSFL

Miami (16)

CW

KDVR

Denver (17) 

Fox

WJW

Cleveland (19) 

Fox

KTXL

Sacramento (20)

Fox

KSWB

San Diego (29)

Fox

KSTU

Salt Lake City (30)  

Fox

Jack Abernethy, CEO of Fox Television Stations, said: “This transaction illustrates Fox’s commitment to local broadcasting and we are pleased to add these stations to our existing portfolio.

“With this acquisition, we will now compete in 19 of the top 20 markets and have a significantly larger presence in the west, which will enhance our already strong platform. This expansion will further enrich our valuable alignments with the NFL, including our new Thursday Night Football rights, MLB and college sports assets.  We are also happy to add many talented Tribune employees to our group, some of whom we know well.”

21st Century Fox has also entered into new network affiliation agreements with Sinclair (and licensees of certain stations to which Sinclair provides services), and will grant Sinclair options to acquire two of its stations, the CW-affiliate WPWR Chicago, where FTS currently has a duopoly, and Fox affiliate KTBC Austin, Texas, for potential proceeds of approximately $15 million and $160 million, respectively.

Fox said completion of the stations’ acquisition is anticipated for the second half of this calendar year, subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and is expected to be coordinated with the closing of Sinclair’s proposed acquisition of Tribune.


Comments (26)

Leave a Reply

KnowsBetter says:

May 9, 2018 at 10:55 am

Why could they possibly want KTBC?

jdshaw says:

May 9, 2018 at 11:58 am

So – this will be the second time WJW, Cleveland has been a Fox O&O. First time around – 1996 – 2008.

    mrschimpf says:

    May 9, 2018 at 3:35 pm

    Duopoly with KEYE.

    KnowsBetter says:

    May 9, 2018 at 8:45 pm

    Could have a duopoly anywhere…. why market #39?

scv91355 says:

May 9, 2018 at 12:40 pm

ALL these stations have been previously owned by FOX, except for San Diego and Miami, I believe. FOX used to own San Diego’s XETV with it’s transmitter across the border.

mrfixit says:

May 9, 2018 at 5:17 pm

Sinclair learning a lot about manipulating stock price from Tribune when reported earning fall short of Wall street expectations – is the SEC following this??? amazing, the timing of such an announcement when profit per share is way off, 42 cents per share instead of 73….

mrfixit says:

May 9, 2018 at 5:26 pm

why doesn’t tribune just sell those fox stations and Not Merge??? that’s the best solution for shareholders… the sum of the parts is greater than the whole. Tribune is clearly run by imbeciles who have no idea what they are doing, otherwise they would put on their Big-boy pants and compete like professionals

Insider says:

May 9, 2018 at 6:28 pm

So Ed Asnin about to lose another Network Affiliation.

Megatron81 says:

May 9, 2018 at 10:34 pm

Surprise that Fox is selling Austin I’d think they would want to keep Austin as that is big Cowboys secondary market. Sinclair also gets CW50 making CW50 & WGN sister station.

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