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KCET to Merge With Satellite Network Link TV

Local public television station KCET announced a merger today with Link Media, an independent non-profit media company based in San Francisco. The resulting company will be called KCETLink and will be headquartered in KCET’s Burbank offices.

Hopefully the merger will provide KCET with much-needed resources. The station has been experiencing financial struggles, including a precipitous drop in contributions since leaving PBS in 2010.

More details on the deal from the New York Times:

After the merger, effective Jan. 1, the two brands and most of their programming will remain separate. But Link TV, which airs cultural and news shows and series like the Danish import “Borgen,” will get an immediate visibility boost in Los Angeles, where KCET will begin to broadcast it on one its digital multicast channels.

Currently, Link TV is available in just 33 million DirecTV and Dish Network homes nationwide.

KCET head Al Jerome will become chief executive of the KCETLink, and Link Media president Paul S. Mason will become chief strategy officer. Jerome advised the NYT that there would be layoffs after the merger, “as some business functions, including fund-raising, are consolidated.”

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