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Gray Television - General Thread

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Have the deals completed yet? I know Gray is shown as the copyright on the WABI and WCJB sites, and they are using Gray resources now at those stations as well.

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Have the deals completed yet? I know Gray is shown as the copyright on the WABI and WCJB sites, and they are using Gray resources now at those stations as well.

The Diversified & Withers deals are still pending. The Diversified one didn't include a LMA when they filed the paperwork last month.

 

The WABI/WCJB deal was greenlighted today. The WDTV/WVFX one is still waiting for the greenlight.

 

Sixty-four years of family ownership of television stations is about to come to an end soon.

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The WABI/WCJB deal was greenlighted today. The WDTV/WVFX one is still waiting for the greenlight.

 

Sixty-four years of family ownership of television stations is about to come to an end soon.

 

WABI had been family owned since day 1?

 

There are still a few left - WRAL/WRAZ, WBRZ, KTBS, WOAY, WINK, WPSD, WSIL, WBOC, WMDT, WFMJ, WWTV/WWUP...those off the top of my head...

 

How many of those will still be independent a few years from now though?

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WABI had been family owned since day 1?

 

There are still a few left - WRAL/WRAZ, WBRZ, KTBS, WOAY, WINK, WPSD, WSIL, WBOC, WMDT, WFMJ, WWTV/WWUP...those off the top of my head...

 

How many of those will still be independent a few years from now though?

 

Yes. In fact, Diversified signed on WABI. It was family owned since Day 1. Today's that day that WABI is no longer locally owned and operated. Welcome to Gray, TV5.

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Yes. In fact, Diversified signed on WABI. It was family owned since Day 1. Today's that day that WABI is no longer locally owned and operated. Welcome to Gray, TV5.

The deal has not been finalized yet. It has been approved, but not wrapped up. They have 90 days to consummate the deal, but they'll probably close it out far sooner than that.

 

Once it's closed, then you can say "Welcome to Gray, TV5".

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WABI had been family owned since day 1?

 

There are still a few left - WRAL/WRAZ, WBRZ, KTBS, WOAY, WINK, WPSD, WSIL, WBOC, WMDT, WFMJ, WWTV/WWUP...those off the top of my head...

 

How many of those will still be independent a few years from now though?

 

As far as still owned by the original family signing it on and owning it...

 

Add:

 

KSTP (Hubbard)

WBNS (Wolfe)

KOBI/KOTI (Smullin)

WISC (Murphy [burns])

*KRGV (I think it's been owned by the Manships the entire time)

 

You can also count WGEM, but Quincy, to me, has expanded a bit beyond the point of a mom-and-pop operator despite being a family company. Same goes for original Cox/Hearst stations.

 

And, although, not since "Day 1"...WCAX has been owned by the Martin family for all but the first four years of its existence.

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As far as still owned by the original family signing it on and owning it...

 

Add:

 

KSTP (Hubbard)

WBNS (Wolfe)

KOBI/KOTI (Smullin)

WISC (Murphy [burns])

*KRGV (I think it's been owned by the Manships the entire time)

 

You can also count WGEM, but Quincy, to me, has expanded a bit beyond the point of a mom-and-pop operator despite being a family company. Same goes for original Cox/Hearst stations.

 

And, although, not since "Day 1"...WCAX has been owned by the Martin family for all but the first four years of its existence.

 

Yeah some of them are better described as companies though and not independents. I created a new thread in Speculatron about the future of the independent stations (I mean by that those which are locally/separately owned, and not stations without an affiliation). Somehow I think Gray will get quite a few of them, as they fit their portfolio and are missing in those markets...

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The deal has not been finalized yet. It has been approved, but not wrapped up. They have 90 days to consummate the deal, but they'll probably close it out far sooner than that.

 

Once it's closed, then you can say "Welcome to Gray, TV5".

 

Oh whoops. Misread your post. Apologies.

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The WDTV/WVFX deal was greenlighted today. FSW paper (in doc.)

 

Wouldn't be surprised if both Diversifed & Withers deals get closed in tandem.

As of May 1st, the sale closed and withers is no more (I think).

 

Edit- I thought wrong, withers still owns Radio stations.

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WABI had been family owned since day 1?

 

There are still a few left - WRAL/WRAZ, WBRZ, KTBS, WOAY, WINK, WPSD, WSIL, WBOC, WMDT, WFMJ, WWTV/WWUP, WCAX...those off the top of my head...

 

How many of those will still be independent a few years from now though?

 

There is now one less of them.

 

Gray is buying WCAX in Burlington, Vermont for $29 million.

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One that I correctly called...and an excellent purchase for them to build up the "inland" Northeast. Unfortunately, there isn't much left to take there, unless WNEP is forced to go back on the market due to conflicts, or they go after WWNY (and, by extension, KEYC).

 

The next closest market to there that I can see Gray taking a good shot at is Salisbury, MD - WBOC seems ripe for them.

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One that I correctly called...and an excellent purchase for them to build up the "inland" Northeast. Unfortunately, there isn't much left to take there, unless WNEP is forced to go back on the market due to conflicts, or they go after WWNY (and, by extension, KEYC).

 

WWNY and KEYC would be perfect for them thinking about it.

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WWNY and KEYC would be perfect for them thinking about it.

 

I have a feeling that Bob Prather's Heartland Media may be more interested in that pair. KEYC is often carried as an alternate CBS affiliate in parts of the Rochester, MN market (alongside KIMT in Mason City, Iowa, which Heartland owns), and WWNY would be their second station in upstate NY after WKTV in Utica.

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I have a feeling that Bob Prather's Heartland Media may be more interested in that pair. KEYC is often carried as an alternate CBS affiliate in parts of the Rochester, MN market (alongside KIMT in Mason City, Iowa, which Heartland owns), and WWNY would be their second station in upstate NY after WKTV in Utica.

 

Both are a good fit for either at this point and given Prather's past connections to Gray I wouldn't be shocked to see some swapping between the two going on eventually based on Gray presence. Prior to today, I actually had Heartland as #2 on my potential WCAX suitors list given how their coverage area and WKTV's touch in the Adirondacks (but not as much as in the analog era).

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Have the deals completed yet? I know Gray is shown as the copyright on the WABI and WCJB sites, and they are using Gray resources now at those stations as well.

The Diversified & Withers deals are still pending. The Diversified one didn't include a LMA when they filed the paperwork last month.

 

I've made a discovery while reading the Q1 earnings report this morning (this was before they'd announce they acquiring WCAX).

On February 16, 2017, we announced that we had agreed to acquire WABI-TV (CBS/CW) in the Bangor, Maine market (DMA 156) and WCJB-TV (ABC/CW) in the Gainesville, Florida market (DMA 161) (collectively, the "Diversified Acquisition") for a total purchase price of $85.0 million. On April 1, 2017, we began operating these stations, subject to the ultimate control of the seller, under a standard pre-closing local programming and marketing agreement (an "LMA"). On May 1, 2017, we completed the Diversified Acquisition, at which time the LMA expired.

So they did operate the outlets under an LMA on April 1st. No wonder why they launched the websites so early. But was surprised they didn't place the LMA on the paperwork, like they did with the Withers deal. Now they're keeping up with the same LMA practice with the WCAX deal starting June 1.

 

Is Gray going to scrape up every other Independent entity in the country? Some of y'all mentioned the United stations. If I had my way, I would piecemeal it. Give Prather KEYC, and give Gray WWNY. But both Watertown & Mankato marekts are closer to the incumbent Prather markets (Utica & Rochester, MN) even though Plattsburgh, NY (which is in the Burlington market) and Watertown are both closer to the Canadian border. But should United sell its stations wholesale, then I would say Gray over Prather.

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They're wrong. There's KFMB which is a locally/family owned CBS affiliate.

 

KFMB is outside Gray's size range as well, but someone else may want it.

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I've made a discovery while I read the Q1 earnings report this morning (this was before they'd announce they getting WCAX).

So they did operate the outlets under an LMA on April 1st. No wonder why they launched the websites so early. But was surprised they didn't place the LMA on the paperwork, like they did with the Withers deal. Now they're keeping up with the same LMA practice with the WCAX deal starting June 1.

 

Is Gray going to scrape up every other Independent entity in the country? Some of y'all mentioned the United stations. If I had my way, I would piecemeal it. Give Prather KEYC, and give Gray WWNY. But both Watertown & Mankato marekts are closer to the incumbent Prather markets (Utica & Rochester, MN) even though Plattsburgh, NY (which is in the Burlington market) and Watertown are both closer to the Canadian border. But should United sell its stations wholesale, that I would say Gray over Prather.

 

Gray does have one major advantage: looking at the remaining independent entities, NONE of them are in Gray markets from what I can tell. The limitations are the paperwork mess acquiring each and every one (time consuming) and there are at least 3 markets that have multiple independent entities (Salisbury, Paducah-Cape Girardeau and Fort Myers-Naples, maybe a couple more) of which they can only take one.

 

Gray has nothing in Minnesota, which is another limiting factor towards KEYC, and few prospects due to the fact Hubbard and Quincy are the leading companies in that state. WWNY might be isolated as well, since Nexstar and Sinclair pretty much have the rest of upstate New York sewn up (and the markets may be too large for them anyway). Unless Sinclair or Nexstar acquires Tribune and Gray scoops up WNEP in a forced divestiture, there will likely be a forced gap in their coverage between northern New England and, at a minimum, the Delmarva.

 

In the Speculatron, I posted the following stations remain independent (may be a few others):

 

KFMB

KIEM (?)

KJTV

KOBI+

KOMU (special case)

KRGV

KTBS

WBOC

WBRZ

WFMJ

WINK

WMDT

WOAY

WPSD

WRAL/WRAZ

WSIL

WWTV+/WFQX+

 

Of those, NONE are in Gray markets. I think Gray might want all of them except:

 

* KFMB and WRAL/WRAZ, too big and too expensive for them

* KOBI+, KJTV and WMDT, they are laggards in their markets (last place among news outlets)

* KIEM, would be isolated in the portfolio with no west coast stations and few prospects

* Although KOMU would fit very well with Gray, would Mizzou really give it up? At a minimum, a "reverse LMA" would be kept probably with the news operation outsourced back to the school.

* Since Paducah/Cape Girardeau have two stations on the list and both rank up there, obviously they can only take one of them.

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They're wrong. There's KFMB which is a locally/family owned CBS affiliate.

 

how could I forget about KFMB. Thank you

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how could I forget about KFMB. Thank you

It's not on you to get the info right. They decided to do a write up touting the change, the least they could have done is taken less than 30 seconds to google other non-group/family owned CBS affiliates and the info would have popped up.

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Gray has nothing in Minnesota, which is another limiting factor towards KEYC, and few prospects due to the fact Hubbard and Quincy are the leading companies in that state.

 

They have nothing in Minnesota but the state is surrounded otherwise especially to Mankato's west with KVLY and KSFY. This could be a good foothold especially if a Hubbard suitor doesn't want KAAL and WDIO/WIRT.

 

WWNY might be isolated as well, since Nexstar and Sinclair pretty much have the rest of upstate New York sewn up (and the markets may be too large for them anyway).

 

The Watertown and Burlington markets border each other so it isn't as bad as it seems but otherwise...no.

 

 

Unless Sinclair or Nexstar acquires Tribune and Gray scoops up WNEP in a forced divestiture, there will likely be a forced gap in their coverage between northern New England and, at a minimum, the Delmarva.

 

I think if anyone gets divested in Scranton, it's WOLF. Whether Gray would take that if offered would be a massive question mark.

 

There are bigger coverage gaps out there in the Northeast: Hubbard from Rochester to Minneapolis, Meredith from Hartford to Saginaw, Tegna from Portland to Buffalo/DC, Quincy from Binghamton to Fort Wayne. Gray wouldn't be alone there.

 

In the Speculatron, I posted the following stations remain independent (may be a few others):

 

* KOBI+, KJTV and WMDT, they are laggards in their markets (last place among news outlets)

* KIEM, would be isolated in the portfolio with no west coast stations and few prospects

 

KOBI: Notice how Gray and Heartland don't overlap. I think there is a reason for this so that when the time comes, Gray can take Heartland in as a clean deal. Then again, the Medford and Reno markets do technically border each other and Gray is in Reno.

 

KIEM: This has Heartland written all over it, especially with their presence in Medford and Redding.

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I wonder what the deal with Bob Prather leaving Gray was all about. Was there bad blood with him and the board? If so, he may be resistant to ever consider being swallowed up by his former company.

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