Sinclair has acquired the largest portfolio of local sports broadcasting rights in the U.S. Here’s what that means for the company.
Former MSG exec Michael McCarthy is tapped to be general manager of Marquee Sports Network, set to launch in February 2020.
Sinclair Broadcast Group’s $9.6 billion deal to acquire 21 regional sports channels may be beloved by stockholders — but lenders are less enthused. Since winning the auction to acquire the 21 regional sports networks from Disney, Sinclair has had a tough time finding a lender to replace a $1.025 billion bridge loan it secured from JPMorgan, sources with direct knowledge of the situation say.
Coming off a first quarter in which core was down, the station group will grow core this year, Sinclair COO Steve Marks told analysts following release of the 1Q results. That promise is based on what the stations are seeing in the auto subcategories of domestic dealers, domestic manufacturers and foreign dealers.“So, the three biggest categories we have are propelling our efforts right now and that gives us a reason to believe that we’re turning the corner,” Marks said.
Sinclair Broadcast Group stock hit the stratosphere on Monday — bucking the day’s downward trend on Wall Street to gain nearly 35% to an all-time high of $60.48 — as the company’s CEO touted the company’s deal to acquire the former Fox regional sports networks.
Sinclair’s deal to buy the former Fox regional sports networks values them at less than expected.
There may be a big silver lining to Sinclair’s loss of its proposed merger with Tribune. In its wake the group has shifted its strategy from TV station acquisition to nonbroadcast ventures like regional sports networks, OTT services and possibly some kind of national news service. And it’s continuing to lead the way toward ATSC 3.0, which it is convinced will multiply the value of broadcast spots through targeting, and enable lucrative new businesses like datacasting.
Byron Allen becomes an equity and content partner in the new RSN holding company, Diamond Sports Group. The RSNs includes exclusive local rights to 42 professional teams consisting of 14 Major League Baseball teams, 16 National Basketball Association teams, and 12 National Hockey League teams.
Disney’s sale of 21 regional sports networks is heating up yet again — thanks to comedian-turned-media mogul Byron Allen jumping into the already crowded and contentious race. Allen, 58, is joining forces with Sinclair Broadcast Group to bid on the RSNs.