In what would be the latest in a series of transactions, Sinclair Broadcast Group will add several more stations to its rapidly expanding station portfolio, according to industry sources. No word on yet on price.
In what it hopes will be a reprise of its success in taking on ABC, CBS and NBC, Fox is setting its sights on the rapidly growing Hispanic population in the U.S. with MundoFox. Media agencies, Spanish-language broadcasters, analysts, program producers and even rival networks believe that News Corp. can pull it off if it is smart about the proposed broadcast network’s programming and can assemble a solid lineup of affiliates. Fox is offering broadcasters one half of the advertising inventory, or six minutes per hour. It’s neither offering nor asking for cash.
Veteran Broadcaster Bert Ellis says the FCC should make putting TV tuner chips in handsets the price of entry for wireless companies in an incentive spectrum auction, and for approval of the combo of major wireless players AT&T and T-Mobile. Ellis, currently president of Titan Broadcasting, says he may well sell some of the spectrum from some of his stations under the right conditions.
The likelihood of federal spectrum auctions is having a two-pronged effect: leading some buyers to look for low-priced stations to buy in the hopes of cashing out from the auction proceeds; and causing some struggling smaller-market and public stations that could use money now to put themselves on the block.
An FCC filing reveals that the company buying the San Francisco and Boston stations, NJR TV, is owned equally by Ted Bartley and family; Titan Broadcast Management, headed by Bert Ellis and Dan Sullivan; and Larry Patrick and his wife, Susan.
The two former Multicultural Television stations are being sold by the trust that took control of them after they ran into financial trouble. The buying group is headed by Ted Bartley. The price was approximately $20 million, according to sources.
Bert Ellis is leasing digitial capacity on his Los Angeles indie KDOC to pay-TV service Sezmi for almost $1 million a year, but, according to a TVNewsCheck survey of stations in Los Angeles and two other top-10 markets, he may be one of the few earning significant revenue from the digital sideline.