It’s mission accomplished for Brandon Burgess, the CEO of Ion Media. Starting in 2006, Burgess took Paxson Communications, changed the company’s name to Ion Media, built up viewership and last month agreed to sell it to E.W. Scripps Co. for $2.65 billion. Burgess, 52, won’t be sticking around to help run Scripps’s newly enlarged national media unit and collect an earn-out.
Financial and operating results drive upgraded performance outlook from financial ratings agencies. It extends Chairman-CEO Brandon Burgess’ contract and he says the company is looking to expand original content, large-market station holdings and wants to innovate with its inventory of spectrum.
Ion Media CEO Brandon Burgess commended FCC Chairman Ajit Pai for restoring the UHF discount in calculating compliance with the 39% national ownership cap — a move that will allow Ion to be sold in toto even though its coverage (64.8%) far exceeds the nominal cap. “This action allows small entrepreneurial and consumer-oriented companies like Ion Media to continue to succeed in a consolidating media world,” he said in an open letter.
Ion Media CEO Brandon Burgess says while his company is looking at the pros and cons of selling some spectrum, he’s doubtful it will and, what’s more, he questions whether the auction, planned for 2016, will ever take place.
Ion’s Brandon Burgess, Univision’s Kevin Cuddihy and Boston Consulting Group’s John Rose say that if you control content, the new means of distributing content — OTT and apps among others — will allow you to stay relevant as TV business and distribution models change.