Sinclair, Nexstar Tops In Spectrum Worth

An analysis from Wells Fargo's Marci Ryvicker says that Sinclair, Nexstar and Media General have the highest median spectrum values as a percentage of enterprise value at 52%, 49% and 27%, respectively.

Sinclair and Nexstar have the greatest spectrum value as a percentage of enterprise and equity value, according to an analysis from Wells Fargo’s Marci Ryvicker (link to the report here).

The Wells Fargo equity research report, released Thursday morning, comes on the heels of a report released by the FCC on Wednesday that pegs broadcast spectrum reserve prices as high as $45 billion.

The FCC report was prepared by Greenhill & Co. and used research from other sources, including the Expanding Opportunities for Broadcasters Coalition, that provided the basis for the $45 billion figure.

The Wells Fargo report further notes that Sinclair, Nexstar and Media General have the highest median spectrum values as a percentage of enterprise value at 52%, 49% and 27%, respectively. Those numbers are calculated to include a 20% tax on proceeds from sale of the spectrum.

Enterprise value typically is defined as market cap plus debt, minority interest and preferred shares, minus total cash and cash equivalents.

Equity value, considered the value of a company available to owners or shareholders, is defined as the enterprise value plus cash and cash equivalents, short and long-term investments, minus all short-term debt, long-term debt and minority interests.


The Wells Fargo report ranks Nexstar, Media General and Tribune Media as having the highest hidden spectrum values, at $11-, $4- and $3-per share, respectively.

Per Wells Fargo, hidden spectrum refers to spectrum that may not be strictly necessary for broadcasting an HD channel. While each full-power channel is 6 mhz, only 3 mhz is necessary to broadcast an HD signal. Hidden spectrum may also include VHF channels and spectrum by channel sharing.

Comments (9)

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Don Thompson says:

October 3, 2014 at 7:57 am

This is a total taxpayer rip off if broadcasters are not required to repay the federal government the $2 billion taxpayers footed to underwrite the DTV converter box coupon program. I know: You thought everyone forgot about that ================== Please follow me on Twitter @TedatACA

    Wagner Pereira says:

    October 3, 2014 at 8:45 am

    You are just upset that people were able to continue to receive free tv instead of subbing to a MVPD. Another example of you being anti-consumer. Then again, how many billions has the government put into PBS ================== Please follow me on Twitter @NotTedatACA

    John Bagwell says:

    October 3, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Hey Ted, why do your members charge the average American household $20 in rental fees each month? Talk about a rip-off.

    Michelle Underwood says:

    October 3, 2014 at 10:10 am

    Yeah, why do I pay over $80 per year in rental for each converter when the darn things are only worth about $200 at most. Real nice scam your boys are running Ted.

    Chad Leabo says:

    October 3, 2014 at 11:14 am

    The Government forced broadcasters to go to DTV, costing stations millions of dollars. Dollars from the spectrum auction associated with this transition paid for the coupons. Pretty sad you don’t know the facts!

    Ellen Samrock says:

    October 3, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    Ted, Ted. Put down those Magic Markers you’ve been sniffing, clear your head and get educated. The Digital Transition and Public Safety Act of 2005 mandated (yes, it was not voluntary) that television broadcasters cease broadcasting in analog by 2009 and switch to digital. The Act also specified that broadcasters vacate the upper UHF band and be repacked so that 108 MHz could be cleared for auction. It also mandated that a fund, the Digital Television Transition and Public Safety Fund, be established from some of the proceeds of the auction so that those who rely on OTA TV, namely people of low income (you know, those who couldn’t afford your exorbitant cable fees) could receive OTA DTV through a converter box. The program known as the TV Converter Box Coupon Program would subsidize the purchase of such a box. It should be noted that, although low-income, these people were still taxpayers, the very ones you ludicrously claim were ripped off by broadcasters. So in summery; the funds for the coupon program came from the telcos and other auction winners, not taxpayers, and those who benefitted by the program–the low income, the elderly, the disabled and rural Americans–were, in themselves, taxpayers. And now back to your regularly scheduled mindless ranting.

Michelle Underwood says:

October 3, 2014 at 10:10 am

Hey Ted, is it true you’re really Tariq Aziz’s twin?

Keith ONeal says:

October 3, 2014 at 7:49 pm

I call on the FCC to end this auction. NOW!

    Wagner Pereira says:

    October 5, 2014 at 10:08 pm

    DC is shaking in it’s boots…..

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