DMA 173

Duhamel Sells Rapid City ABC Affil To Schurz

After 58 years as a family business, Bill Duhamel says it's time to sell KOTA. "The rapidly consolidating television industry makes it difficult for a single, stand-alone business to remain competitive and to develop the necessary capital to expand into the digital era," he said. Acquisition-minded Schurz owns 10 other TV stations. Terms of the deal have not yet been disclosed.

Bill Duhamel has sold ABC affiliate KOTA Rapid City, S.D. (DMA 173), to Schurz Communications for an undisclosed amount, the two parties announced Thursday.

Included in the deal are satellite stations in Scottsbluff, Neb.; Lead-Deadwood, S.D.; and Sheridan, Wyo.

Schurz already has a presence in South Dakota, owning six radio stations in Rapid City and the American News in Aberdeen. Nationwide, it owns 10 TV stations, three cable companies, seven radio stations and 10 daily newspapers and eight weekly newspapers. It is based in South Bend, Ind.

KOTA has been owned by the Duhamel family since it first went on the air in 1955.

“The rapidly consolidating television industry makes it difficult for a single, stand-alone business to remain competitive and to develop the necessary capital to expand into the digital era,” said Duhamel in a statement.

Todd Schurz, president and CEO of Schurz, said the company’s strategy is to seek top-performing stations in vibrant communities that excel in local news and public service. “There is no question that KOTA fits that criteria with its deep roots in the Black Hills back to Rapid City’s founding. As a family owned company ourselves, we look forward to the opportunity to further extend our relationships in KOTA territory.”

BRAND CONNECTIONS

Schurz’ SVP Marci Burdick led the acquisition process. A Rapid City native and former KOTA anchor/news director, she said, “Our goal for KOTA-TV is to expand content across traditional platforms and in the area of new media for the benefit of listeners, viewers and advertisers.”

Duhamel will continue to operate five radio stations in South Dakota.

The sale is subject to FCC approval.


Comments (5)

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Steve Ingram says:

November 1, 2013 at 11:16 am

This sale is a win-win. Bill Duhamel has been a great community-oriented broadcaster over many, many years. And, to see another great broadcaster with a vision for the future acquire KOTA is nothing but positive. Congratulations to all!

Diane Tryneski says:

November 1, 2013 at 1:49 pm

So they’re friends again? Schurz sued Duhamel when he walked away from a deal to sell several years ago.

Al Lipson says:

November 1, 2013 at 2:39 pm

Bill, who will Patsy and I hang with at conventions ?

Brett Zongker says:

November 1, 2013 at 7:19 pm

Hate to see Bill Duhamel leaving the TV biz. A great local broadcaster. He and Judy are class acts.

Ashley Messina says:

November 2, 2013 at 7:48 pm

This is sad. Schurz is a decent outfit. But, seeing the end of another locally owned and operated broadcaster is a pity unique to the U.S., with a formerly long tradition of local O&O’s.


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