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Station Groups

James Killen Named Sinclair Group Manager

Sinclair BroadcastSinclair Broadcast Group has named James Killen Group Manager of Tulsa, OK, Little Rock, AR, Roanoke-Lynchburg, VA and “other markets to be determined.”

“Having held a key sales management position at Allbritton and given his familiarity with the stations and staff, he is the perfect choice to continue with us as a Group Manager overseeing some of these same markets we recently acquired,” Steve Marks, co-chief operating officer of Sinclair’s TV group said in a statement. “We look forward to building upon that foundation and expanding our market presence.”

Since 2004, Killen has been VP of Sales for Allbritton, overseeing seven stations as well as NewsChannel 8 and Politico. He’s also worked as local sales manager and New York national sales manager at WNBC in New York, and as an account executive at WRAL in Raleigh-Durham and WECT in Wilmington, NC.

Sinclair Launches Original Programming Division

sinclair_304Sinclair Broadcast Group is going to start producing original programming.

The station group announced it’s launching the SOP, or Sinclair Original Programming division which will create and develop entertainment content as well as infomercials and direct response commercials. Sinclair said the content will initially be developed for its CW and MyTV affiliates and will run during prime time and weekend afternoons.

The division will be led by Arthur Hasson who is being named COO of Sinclair Original Programming. Hasson will continue to work as GM of WHP, Sinclair’s Harrisburg, PA, CBS and MyNet affiliate and CW affiliate WLYH.

By developing original content in connection with talented program producers, we can provide cost effective, flexible projects that can be readily monetized,” Hasson said in a statement. “In addition, we believe there is potential to distribute shows beyond our platforms both domestically and internationally. From the creative side, our large footprint of stations allows us to test concepts and talent efficiently.”

It’s Trading Day! Five Station Groups Buy and Sell Ten Stations

station groups cropped

Five station groups have undertaken a station swap similar to what happens at the trading deadline in professional sports. This time, though, the moves affect hundreds of people.

Media General and LIN Media, looking to comply with Federal regulations over ownership rules have initiated a TV station swap involving Sinclair Broadcast, Meredith and Hearst Corporation.

Here’s the breakdown:

Sinclair will buy from Media General: Providence NBC affiliate WJAR

Sinclair will buy from LIN Media: Green Bay FOX affiliate WLUK, Green Bay CW affiliate WCWF and certain assets of Savannah, GA, FOX affiliate WTGS and the rights to acquire the principal assets of WTGS, which is operated by LIN but owned by WTGS Television, LLC.

Media General will buy from Sinclair: Tampa, FL, MyTV affiliate WTTA, creating a duopoly since they already own NBC affiliate WFLA, and Colorado Springs stations KXRM (FOX) and KXTU (CW).

Media General will sell to Hearst: Birmingham, AL NBC affiliate WVTM.

LIN Media will sell to Hearst: Savannah, GA ABC affiliate WJCL.

Meredith will buy from LIN Media: Mobile-Pensacola FOX affiliate WALA. Read more

Sinclair Names New GMs in Washington, DC and Columbus Markets

sinclair_304Sinclair Broadcast Group has named Dan Mellon GM of its Washington, D.C. ABC affiliate WJLA and local cable news network NewsChannel 8.

The station group also named Tony D’Angelo GM of Columbus, OH, ABC affiliate WSYX.

“I am excited to announce the promotions of Dan and Tony,” Steve Marks, Sinclair’s co-chief operating officer said in a statement. “They have been loyal employees of the Company with a history of success in leading our stations, especially in Columbus, one of our largest and most important markets.”

Since 2006, Mellon has been group manager of Sinclair’s stations. He was GM of WSYX from 2005 until 2006 and was also responsible for oversight into WTTE. D’Angelo had been director of sales at WSYX, WTTE and WWHO in Columbus since 2003.

Kelly Lattimer Named GM of WQRF-WTVO

nexstar_304Nexstar Broadcasting has named Kelly Lattimer VP and GM of Rockford, IL, FOX affiliate WQRF. She will also oversee ABC affiliate WTVO through Nexstar’s operating agreement with Mission Broadcasting.

“With Kelly’s personal and professional longevity in the Rockford market she brings an intimate understanding of the local community to her new role at WQRF-TV,” Tim Busch, executive VP and co-chief operating officer for Nexstar said in a statement.

Since 2008, Lattimer has been the director of sales of Nexstar’s Rockford broadcast and digital operations. She was the GSM of KFXA in Cedar Rapids before joining Nexstar.

Brad Ramsey Promoted to VP of Sales for Gannett Broadcasting

gannett_304Gannett Broadcasting has announced Brad Ramsey has been promoted to VP of Sales of the station group.

Currently Ramsey is the president and GM of Gannett owned WVEC in Norfolk, VA.

He starts his new job with the mother ship on September 8. He will report to Dan Lyons, Gannett Broadcast VP of sales strategy and development.

Nexstar Sells Evansville Station for $18.6 Million

nexstar_304Nexstar has announced it is selling Evansville CBS affiliate WEVV for $18.6 million to minority led broadcaster Bayou City Broadcasting Evansville, Inc.

“The proposed transaction announced today highlights our focus on completing pending transactions and represents the second time in the last two months that Nexstar has structured an agreement that furthers the FCC’s goal of increasing minority television ownership diversity,” Nexstar chairman, president and CEO Perry Sook said in a statement.

WEVV is owned by Communications Corp. of America. Nexstar and Mission Broadcasting announced they were buying CCA last April for $270 million.

According to the Nexstar press release, “The sale of WEVV to BCB brings the overall CCA transaction into compliance with Department of Justice requirements for approval and will release the pending transaction from hold pending divestiture.”

FCC Approves Sinclair’s Allbritton Buy

sinclair_304The FCC has approved Sinclair Broadcast Group’s purchase of Allbritton Communications.

The sixteen page document released by the FCC also denied several petitions against the merger.

>UPDATE: William Lake, chief of the FCC Media Bureau released a statement outlining the terms of the deal. Which he wrote was approved “after the parties agreed to amend the proposal in three markets to comply with our ownership rules:

Consistent with DOJ review, Sinclair will divest the station in the Harrisburg market.

To comply with our local TV ownership rule, Sinclair will deliver the programming of stations in the Birmingham and Charleston markets via digital multicasting. This means that Sinclair will put the full programming of the stations on the digital signal of the stations it already owns. The licenses of the Allbritton stations that previously broadcast that programming will therefore be returned to the Commission. Most importantly, consumers will lose no programming currently available to them. Read more

Sinclair Announces Funding for Allbritton Purchase

sinclair_allbrittonSinclair Broadcast Group announced it has lined up the funding to buy Allbritton Communications.

In a press release, the station group announced Sinclair Television Group, a subsidiary, has closed its private offering of $550 million worth of senior unsecured notes due in 2024. Sinclair said it plans to use the money from the funds along with $400 million in loans, a revolving credit line and cash to pay for the deal.

Last July, Sinclair announced it was buying Allbritton for $985 million.

The station group reportedly cleared the last hurdle blocking approval of the deal last week by agreeing to a settlement with the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division. As part of the deal, Sinclair agreed to sell Harrisburg, PA, ABC affiliate WHTM as soon as the purchase goes through.

Sinclair Launches College Sports Network

sinclair_304Sinclair Broadcast Group announced today it’s getting into the sports programming game by launching a collegiate sports initiative called the American Sports Network.

The network plans to air its programming on Sinclair’s CW and MyNet stations and has deals with Division I conferences like Conference USA, the Colonial Athletic Association, Big South Conference, Southern Conference and Patriot League.

The initiative, headed up by Doron Gorshein, CEO of Sinclair Networks, will air live football, basketball, soccer and other games. The station group also added, “the Company’s plans may include potential development of new cable networks and digital platforms focused on these new content initiatives” if it can secure carriage agreements with distributors.

“This is another example of our foray into the content creation business,” David Smith, president and CEO of Sinclair said in a statement. “The launch of ASN will provide important and valuable content that is directed at serving our local communities, while improving the value of our CW and MyNet affiliates. We are confident in Doron’s ability to lead this endeavor, given his acumen in this arena.”

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