WGN-AM Quandry - Page 2
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Thread: WGN-AM Quandry

  1. #11
    The cloud company could look at WGN. Cumulus has taken a talk approach to 106.7 in Atlanta with weekends full of paid programming. They seem to be satisfied with making a little profit when they could make a lot more with another format. They might “save” WGN from major changes which could be a good thing.

  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by secondchoice View Post
    The cloud company could look at WGN.
    If buying stations in Chicago had been a priority, they wouldn't have let WLUP-FM go to EMF. As someone else pointed out, the biggest boat anchor they have are the former ABC AM stations, including WLS-AM. So adding to that wouldn't be prudent. WLS is already clearing their syndicated talk programming, and that doesn't appear to be a growth area for them.

  3. #13

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    https://www.chicagotribune.com/busin...202-story.html

    And the Chicago Tribune does an article on WGN Radio's uncertainty as Nexstar is in talks to get the Tribune stations like KTLA, WPIX and WGN-TV.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by secondchoice View Post
    The cloud company could look at WGN. Cumulus has taken a talk approach to 106.7 in Atlanta with weekends full of paid programming. They seem to be satisfied with making a little profit when they could make a lot more with another format. They might “save” WGN from major changes which could be a good thing.
    Wouldn't Hubbard be a more likely buyer than Cumulus?

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by JRH View Post
    Wouldn't Hubbard be a more likely buyer than Cumulus?
    Maybe, but they just did some major cost cutting at stations around the country, including Chicago.

    https://www.radiodiscussions.com/sho...vernight-Hosts

    Not sure how much spare cash they have, especially after paying $80 million for the Alpha cluster in West Palm Beach. Unlike other radio companies, Hubbard is a private family owned company.

  6. #16
    Privately held Hubbard should not be ruled out just because they sliced staff. There is a huge difference between capital investment and operating income. Just because someone sliced staff doesn't mean they lack access to capital funds to further expand/grow. Two different business practices with different goals. Never mind, Hubbard doesn't need to tow the Wall Street rules of a public company and public shareholder value.

    Alpha---I doubt they would enter the fray of downtown media anyway, never mind they have capital structural problems which they are attempting to manage despite them having room in their market for another AM.

    Moreover, operating a stand-alone station is a lack-luster operating income model lest the operator plans to buy other market properties. Today, operators capitalize on the scales of economy which allow staff to cover multiple stations/clusters/markets.

    So that leaves Cumulus, IHeart, and Entercom along with dark horses Newsweb (Fred has the dough) and Salem. I doubt Newsweb would bite given they've been in the downsizing mode the past few years. Fred is getting up in age after all.

    Regardless of anyone's speculation, there's the matter of getting the deal past the FCC and other agencies. Until that happens, Trib would need to sell...which doesn't appear likely.

    RR

  7. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Rex Radio View Post
    Privately held Hubbard should not be ruled out just because they sliced staff.
    That wasn't the only reason. As I said in post #15, they just spent $80 million to buy a cluster in West Palm Beach. Adding another $18-20 million to the debt won't be easily made up.

  8. #18
    OK, so today it's being reported that Cumulus MIGHT be interested in WGN if it becomes available:

    https://www.allaccess.com/net-news/a...ng-wgn-chicago

    I have no idea why they'd want to do that, given the ratings at WLS. They could just hire the WGN staff and save a lot of money.

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