Group closes on $56 million deal for Johnstown, Pa., CBS affil that also includes WLYH Lancaster, Pa., now run by Clear Channel under a time brokerage agreement.
Nexstar Broadcasting Group announced Friday afternoon that it completed the purchase of CBS affiliate WTAJ Johnstown-Altoona, Pa., for $56 million from Television Station Group Holdings, primarily owned by Boston Bentures and Alto Communications.
Included in the deal is CW affiliate WLYH Harrisburg-Lancaster-Lebanon-York, Pa. (DMA 41), currently operated by Clear Channel under a “grandfathered” time brokerage agreement that runs until 2015.
Nexstar owns four network affiliates in Wilkes Barre-Scranton and Erie, Pa.
Nexstar President/CEO Perry A. Sook commented: “The transaction is a promising opportunity for us as the station is top ranked in the market in terms of audience share and billings, its local news is No. 1 in every daypart in which it airs, the station broadcasts to the healthy State College market. Additionally, our negotiated retransmission agreements are being overlaid in this market and will contribute to operating improvements.”
Nexstar said it funded the purchase “through borrowings under its senior credit facility. Reflecting the completion of the transaction, the company’s total leverage of outstanding debt to EBITDA at the operating company is approximately 6 times at Dec. 31, 2006.”