Scripps will continue to operate the Ion Television network on its 48 Ion stations’ primary channels but will cease operations of the Ion multicast networks Ion Plus, Qubo and Shop Ion, effective Feb. 28.
Scripps says the transaction provides about 60% accretion in free cash flow per share. It gives it a portfolio of 60 stations in 41 markets.
One rarely hears about a station group deciding not to pursue lucrative retransmission consent fees but when E.W. Scripps agreed to acquire Ion Media for $2.65 billion, it said the Ion stations would stick to must-carry. Analysts initially said they were surprised by the unusual strategy and asked about it during a conference call in which Scripps executives went over details of the transaction.
Broadcasters including Scripps, Tegna, CBS, Sinclair, Ion and Gray have been laying bigger bets in the multicasting business, acquiring some of the more popular diginets and partnering to develop new ones in a market showing signs of further expansion. CBS’s new diginet DABL, for instance, is bringing back the classic lifestyle programming of Martha Stewart and others in the fall.
The agreement includes renewals of all Law & Order franchises, making Ion the only network to have all three series.
Ion, Trinity and Univision have weighed in at the FCC with supplemental evidence for what they argue is the need to roll back the FCC’s 39% cap on a TV station group’s national audience reach, and preferably all the way rather than raising it once again.
21st Century Fox is in talks to operate television stations across the U.S. with Ion Media Networks, potentially paving the way for Fox to dump Sinclair Broadcast Group as an affiliate partner, a person familiar with the situation said. Closely held Ion would contribute its more than 60 independent stations to the joint venture, while Fox would throw in its 28 stations, which include top markets such as New York and Los Angeles. As part of the deal, Fox would consider switching its affiliation to Ion from Sinclair for 26 stations that are up for renewal this year, said the person, who asked not to be identified.
2016 Revenue: $147.9 million Stations: 62 stations in 56 markets Coverage: 64.82% Ownership: Private Key Executives: Brandon Burgess, chairman-CEO; David Glenn, co-head of TV stations operations; Terri Santisi, co-head of TV stations operations. What’s Up: It received $84.6 million for selling the spectrum of two of its stations. In May, Ion Media announced that it would move its New York […]
The Big Five plus Univision have all suffered ratings declines with 18-49s this season. But Telemundo and a host of smaller networks are growing.
The programming service’s fall launch week kicks off tonight, highlighted by the season 4 premiere of original series Saving Hope at 11 p.m. ET.
Ion Television is adding a syndication run of ABC’s Canadian-produced police drama Rookie Blue to its general entertainment lineup in the fall.
Hulu Plus and CBS announce new SVOD deal for CBS drama starring Tom Selleck. WGN America acquires exclusive basic cable rights while Ion gets exclusive weekday, primetime rights for off-net episodes.
CBS is expected to announce an SVOD deal for the Tom Selleck crime drama as well as pacts with both WGN America and Ion.
Ion Media Networks today announced a new long-term agreement for Ion Television’s nationwide carriage on DirecTV. The agreement covers the distribution of Ion’s flagship network, Ion Television, on DirecTV’s broad platform of subscribers for years to come. Additionally, Ion Television will now be offered in high-definition on the satellite service and will remain available to subscribers […]
It buys the off-net rights to all 10 seasons of the NBC-USA drama, the day after adding Numbers to its lineup.
WWE and Ion Television today announced a new weekly one-hour original series airing on Wednesday nights at 8 p.m. ET. WWE Main Event will debut on Oct. 3 and feature performers from the rosters of Monday Night Raw and Friday Night SmackDown. The new show will be available in 100 million U.S. television households on […]
The Ion network is moving further into the entertainment news business as part of YouTube’s effort to establish a string of channels on its site. Ion and partner PMC are expanding their ENTV (Entertainment News Television) brand with a network that will include a daily appearance by former Us Editor in Chief Bonnie Fuller and some longer-form programming.
Ion Media Networks announced today that television research executive Steve Sternberg has been named senior vice president, sales research. Sternberg will be based in Ion’s New York office and report to Stephen Appel, president, sales, Ion Media Networks. In the newly created position, Sternberg and his team will be responsible for developing and implementing sales […]
Flashpoint has become the first of the Canadian imports to land a U.S. syndication deal in a complex arrangement with CBS and Ion that will allow both Flashpoint’s current U.S. network home, CBS, and its new one, Ion, to air originals of the procedural about an elite tactical unit.
The new calls for what’s now WQEX Pittsburgh are just part of Ion’s effort to transform the ShopNBC affiliate to its own network O&O with Qubo and Ion Life on subchannels.
The seller is noncommercial WQED, which has been trying to spin off the station since the mid-1990s. More than a decade ago, Ion, as Paxson Communications, had tried to acquire the station, but that deal ran into opposition from public TV advocates.