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ABC 7 Denver

TEGNA Broadcasting and Digital General Discussion

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Posted (edited)

When WTHR and WBNS were sold, we all knew it was a matter of when, not if, and the graphics aren't terrible (WTHR's prior graphics were better, but those who don't follow this stuff could almost think these new ones as an evolution of those). Losing the Eyewitness News branding and the Tower disappointed me. I dislike that they kept the Live Doppler 13 branding for their weather because weather is more than just the radar (that happened at some point during the most recent graphics package—SkyTrak Weather became Live Doppler 13 Weather).

 

I'll be curious to see what staffing changes happen now that Tegna's really starting to handle operations and how the market will respond.

 

Despite all the weird drama over the past five years (ownership and affiliation swaps), Indy has become a cookie-cutter market for the big station groups:

 

WXIN/WTTV are going to use whatever graphics Nexstar rolls out to most stations (maybe unique music though?)

WRTV is cookie-cutter Scripps

WTHR is cookie-cutter Tegna

 

WISH is going to be the wildcard though...stuck with Nexstar graphics at the moment (I dislike the rotating box logo they recently threw in), but might be interesting since it's the independently-owned station in the market...perhaps they'll carve out a niche?)

Edited by ecs0013
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Posted (edited)

So Tegna has finally responded to Soo Kim's request to talk about the bid's and apparently 2 of the parties (one of them presumably Apollo the other being Gray) has dropped out of the running for Tegna due to COVID-19 concerns https://www.tegna.com/tegna-reports-on-acquisition-approaches/

 

So that leaves the Najafi/TBN and Byron Allen unless Soo Kim comes in to takeover.

Edited by oknewsguy

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Posted (edited)

Tegna-itis has well and truly reached WTHR:

https://www.ftvlive.com/sqsp-test/2020/3/26/getting-out-of-traffic

 

WTHR said it will no longer have a dedicated person covering traffic. “The traditional traffic reporter will not exist in this new model,” WTHR General Manager and President Michael Brouder said. “The role will be shared among weather, a social reporter and, if warranted, an anchor. [It] all depends on the story of traffic on the particular day.”

Edited by RJP

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Posted (edited)
On 3/29/2020 at 5:35 PM, oknewsguy said:

So Tegna has finally responded to Soo Kim's request to talk about the bid's and apparently 2 of the parties (one of them presumably Apollo the other being Gray) has dropped out of the running for Tegna due to COVID-19 concerns https://www.tegna.com/tegna-reports-on-acquisition-approaches/

 

So that leaves the Najafi/TBN and Byron Allen unless Soo Kim comes in to takeover.

Follow-up #1:

 

In the latest edition of As the Proxy Fight Turns, Soo Kim (as expected) commented on Tegna's announcement from yesterday and to no one's surprise it's very provacative. Here's the statement:

Quote

We understand that TEGNA's process has stalled because, amid a global emergency and capital markets dislocation, this Board has created arbitrary deadlines and unnecessary preconditions. By their own admission, the Company has been unwilling to provide access to information unless suitors first demonstrate certainty of financing. This approach would be off market in any deal environment, and particularly so under current market conditions. The Board's actions appear designed to end this process before it can even begin in earnest. This is just the latest in a troubling pattern of behavior. It should never have come to this, and shareholders need to hold this Board accountable.

So COVID-19 has not stopped Soo Kim from pursuing a takeover of Tegna and I actually can't blame Kim for that one bit.

 

Another Standard-Tegna update, former Tribune executive Larry Wert has dropped out of the running for a spot on Tegna's board and no it's not because of COVID-19 but because of a clause within his contract that prevents Wert from joining another company for at least a year (which was included in Wert's contract when he was running Tribune)

Edited by oknewsguy
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7 hours ago, RJP said:

Tegna-itis has well and truly reached WTHR:

https://www.ftvlive.com/sqsp-test/2020/3/26/getting-out-of-traffic

 

WTHR said it will no longer have a dedicated person covering traffic. “The traditional traffic reporter will not exist in this new model,” WTHR General Manager and President Michael Brouder said. “The role will be shared among weather, a social reporter and, if warranted, an anchor. [It] all depends on the story of traffic on the particular day.”

 

How is this "Tegna-itis"? A lot of TEGNA stations have a traffic reporter. The fact that WTHR dropped theirs obviously was a local decision. It's a rare example of local media evolving and re-thinking dated concepts.

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2 minutes ago, morning traffic said:

 

How is this "Tegna-itis"? A lot of TEGNA stations have a traffic reporter. The fact that WTHR dropped theirs obviously was a local decision. It's a rare example of local media evolving and re-thinking dated concepts.

But how is a traffic reporter dated? I though my that was one of THE reasons people watched the morning news.

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Especially if competing stations have traffic reporters, WTHR should have one for their newscasts as well.  But given that we're talking about Tegna...nothing surprises me anymore. 

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I don't think the idea of a traffic reporter is dated. The idea of having a *dedicated* traffic reporter is. 

 

Stations can save a bundle of money by having the weather team, anchors, and MMJ's fill in the role. It's awful if she got cut, but it's the nature of media now. Trimming off that extra bit of fat to maximize profit. 

 

Hopefully she got a nice severance, or even decided to leave herself. Either way, it's awful to see her go. 

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Mimi is still employed full time at a local radio station. WXIN is the only one with a dedicated traffic anchor. 

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18 minutes ago, jbnews said:

But how is a traffic reporter dated? I though my that was one of THE reasons people watched the morning news.

 

Because that job can typically be combined with another role. Unlike Meteorology, traffic doesn't require a degree.

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, ABC 7 Denver said:

 

Because that job can typically be combined with another role. Unlike Meteorology, traffic doesn't require a degree.

I know THEY could do it, but these reporters envelop themselves in city roads and traffic patterns and that benefits the viewers, imo. But, this was obviously a local decision. Surprising that something like this would come from WTHR.

Edited by jbnews

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9 hours ago, jbnews said:

I know THEY could do it, but these reporters envelop themselves in city roads and traffic patterns and that benefits the viewers, imo. But, this was obviously a local decision. Surprising that something like this would come from WTHR.

 

It's not a full-time gig though and costs the stations money. Also with the map technology available, anyone can create a traffic report. It's better to offload it onto someone with fewer duties.

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On 3/30/2020 at 1:15 PM, oknewsguy said:

Follow-up:

 

In the latest edition of As the Proxy Fight Turns, Soo Kim (as expected) commented on Tegna's announcement from yesterday and to no one's surprise it's very provacative. Here's the statement:

So COVID-19 has not stopped Soo Kim from pursuing a takeover of Tegna and I actually can't blame Kim for that one bit.

 

Another Standard-Tegna update, former Tribune executive Larry Wert has dropped out of the running for a spot on Tegna's board and no it's not because of COVID-19 but because of a clause within his contract that prevents Wert from joining another company for at least a year (which was included in Wert's contract when he was running Tribune)

2nd Follow-Up:

 

This Proxy Fight is going to get more and more interesting as we get closer to that April 30th shareholder meeting.

 

So today, Soo Kim came out with a definitive proxy fight to Tegna's shareholders citing the lack of performance and everything else that Kim has refrenced to in the past.

 

Tegna as usual continues to defend the same thing they've been defending  all while yesterday Tegna's stocks fell down nearly 20% and at one point during the trading session, Tegna was trading under $10 a share. I don't think that COVID-19 is the sole reason for Tegna's sudden collapse on the stock market a lot of it has to do with the fact that people are showing a no confidence vote to Dave Lougee and with today they closed just shy of $11 after Soo Kim's responses to Tegna shareholders.

 

So putting two and two together I think whenever Lougee or even Tegna itself talks it sends their stocks down and when Kim talks they go up

 

And finally, Kim also launched the Tomorrow's Tegna website https://tomorrowstegna.com/

 

Lot's to digest but that is the latest edition of As the Proxy Fight Turns

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Not sure if anyone noticed, but KTVB got the new website look.

Screenshot_2020-03-31 Boise's Leading Local News Weather, Traffic, Sports and more Boise, Idaho KTVB com ktvb com.png

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Posted (edited)
On 3/31/2020 at 6:59 PM, Yankees4life said:

I hope and pray that Kim takes over. Tegna NEEDS a shakeup

I really think that April 30th (that's when the annual shareholder meeting will take place) we'll really find out whether Tegna can behave and engage in talks or keep the same tired old rhetoric they've been saying for a long time and risk being taken over.

 

Overall I think the more the 2 trade blows at each other the more I think at some point something is going to have to give. Right now Tegna has no plan on how to stop Kim's advances (e.g. Poison Pill, they're using the Gold card and not the Green Card which they should be using. Right now I don't see the behavior's of either Tegna or Kim changing for at least the next several weeks.

 

Follow-up #3:

 

Reuters has came out with this article and here's additional comments by Soo Kim

Quote

“The two remaining bidders for Tegna own other broadcasting assets, so there could be various synergies. Given that we don’t know what the synergies are, you have to give people a chance to figure them out,” Standard General founding partner Soohyung Kim said in an interview.

“If you create arbitrary barriers, you have the result we saw on Sunday. This is a question of good faith and credibility on the part of Tegna,” Kim added.

 

I think right now, Tegna has at least 29 days to figure this out.

 

Open up to bidders WITHOUT any restraints or hesitations, you can get a deal done with either Allen or Najafi/TBN

 

Continue resisting calls and coming out with statements like we saw Sunday, and they'll face a takeover.

 

Those are 2 very clear choices, no ifs ands or buts about it.

Edited by oknewsguy

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4 minutes ago, GoldenShine9 said:

Better yet, just wait for things to get better and see if better offers come.

I agree it probably should happen but the issue I simply can't get past is Soo Kim. He's not going to wait until things get better for something to happen, afterall he didn't wait until the economy to get better when he bought into Young Broadcasting (which at that time they were bankrupt) 

 

Obviously Tegna isn't bankrupt here but it has severely underperformed against its peers and no matter what's going on with COVID-19 Kim's going to get what he wants.

 

If I were in his shoes I would agree and wait until things got better when the better offers would come, unfortunately I'm not.

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Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, CircleSeven said:

Standard General now has 12% interest in Tegna.

My biggest takeaway is this quote from Soo Kim 

Quote

“We are fully committed to Tegna, and we are not going anywhere,” said Soo Kim, founding partner of Standard General L.P.

“This increase in our position underscores our conviction that the company’s intrinsic value is much higher than its market price, but also our belief that Tegna will not achieve its full potential without an upgraded board. Our exceptional nominees have the needed experience and expertise to implement changes to Tegna’s business, operations, capital allocation and strategy to transform the company into the best-in-class operator it should be.”

“Our additional investment boosts our economic and financial exposure to the company’s equity and signals our steadfast commitment to driving change at Tegna for the benefit of all shareholders. Recently, Tegna has attempted to mislead shareholders and has falsely implied that by reducing the number of physical shares we own, that we reduced our economic interest in the company. In fact, Standard General has actually recently INCREASED its investment by more than 20%.”

 

This is referring to a claim that Tegna made on Thursday that Kim selling 5 million shares "troubling" and tried to make it as if Kim was selling his stock in Tegna, obviously as it's been the case for the last several weeks and even a couple of months it's blown up in the faces of Tegna's executives.

 

I think Kim is preparing for a takeover of Tegna because there's no way Kim would've increased his stake in Tegna if he wasn't actually preparing to takeover Tegna.

 

I also anticipate Kim increasing his stake in Tegna in the coming weeks leading up to the all important shareholder meeting.

 

Overall, Tegna is CLEARLY under pressure from Kim and they can't continue citing COVID-19 as a reason to not doing something something simple as selling the company

Edited by oknewsguy

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Al-SA-TX said:

I can't wait for all this to blow up in Soo Kim's face. 🙄

We'll find out April 30th, but Kim is not deterred by anything not even COVID-19 is slowing down his quest to either get Tegna to sell or takeover the company and he's NOT going to let Tegna's rejection of his nominees stop him from getting what he wants. Period.

Edited by oknewsguy
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