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Thread: Urban One Exits Detroit

  1. #1

    Urban One Exits Detroit

    Urban One sells WDMK to Beasley, thus exits the market:


    https://www.allaccess.com/net-news/a...etroit-three-t

    This follows their sale last year of WPZR to EMF.

    https://www.allaccess.com/net-news/a...detroit-to-emf

  2. #2
    Technically, it’s still in the market as it operates (but doesn’t own) 107.5. The trades say Urban One does not plan to renew the LMA on 107.5 when it expires at the end of the year.

  3. #3
    $13.5M seems like a generous price for the station. Not sure if a format change really makes sense, especially with their HD2 frequency.

  4. #4
    The programming restrictions that were built into the deal is what has me scratching my head.

    Joyner is retiring at the end of 2019, correct? What happens after he's gone? Will Beasley be contractually bound to carry his replacement? How much national ad inventory sold by Urban One will Beasley/WDMK be forced to clear? WDMK's current programming formula seems to be failing miserably vis-a-vis Mix 92.3. Why on earth would Beasley want a deal whereby they are forced to continue carrying Urban One's programming?

    I'll have to peruse the FCC web site to see if I cannot pull up a complete copy of the Asset Purchase Agreement. Either those "must run"programming stipulations are short-term in duration, or Urban One is giving Beasley a cut of the revenue sold at the national level for Joyner and D.L. Hughley's respective drive time programs.

    If the price were $13.5 million without any programming restrictions, then I'd say it's a fair price. With all the unknowns surrounding programming-related covenants, it is impossible for me to say if Beasley got a decent deal or overpaid.

    Those translator signals are a big pile of garbage. Not sure why Beasley would want to assume the tower rent payments, unless the APA calls for Urban One to retain that liability.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkW View Post
    Why on earth would Beasley want a deal whereby they are forced to continue carrying Urban One's programming?
    Beasley doesn't have much experience in this format. If they're going to stick with the format, they might as well keep the programming.

    Joyner & Hughley are basic syndicated shows, so there is a split on the revenues.

  6. #6
    Something just dawned on me - weren't Beasley's Urban and Urban AC stations in Charlotte previously owned by Urban One? When did those properties become Beasley stations? (Did Greater Media acquire them first?)

    It will be interesting to see if Beasley makes a play for 107.5 FM if & when it goes on the market.

    Personally, I would have loved to have seen WDRQ & WDVD leave Cumulus' hands and go to Beasley. I think two Caucasian female focused stations would have rounded out Beasley's Detroit cluster very nicely; the addition of those two stations would've helped Beasley reach significant cume not currently reached by WRIF, WCSX and to a lesser degree WMGC.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkW View Post
    Something just dawned on me - weren't Beasley's Urban and Urban AC stations in Charlotte previously owned by Urban One?
    No they were CBS stations and there was a trade a few years ago.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by MarkW View Post
    The programming restrictions that were built into the deal is what has me scratching my head.

    Joyner is retiring at the end of 2019, correct? What happens after he's gone? Will Beasley be contractually bound to carry his replacement? How much national ad inventory sold by Urban One will Beasley/WDMK be forced to clear? WDMK's current programming formula seems to be failing miserably vis-a-vis Mix 92.3. Why on earth would Beasley want a deal whereby they are forced to continue carrying Urban One's programming?

    I'll have to peruse the FCC web site to see if I cannot pull up a complete copy of the Asset Purchase Agreement. Either those "must run"programming stipulations are short-term in duration, or Urban One is giving Beasley a cut of the revenue sold at the national level for Joyner and D.L. Hughley's respective drive time programs.

    If the price were $13.5 million without any programming restrictions, then I'd say it's a fair price. With all the unknowns surrounding programming-related covenants, it is impossible for me to say if Beasley got a decent deal or overpaid.

    Those translator signals are a big pile of garbage. Not sure why Beasley would want to assume the tower rent payments, unless the APA calls for Urban One to retain that liability.
    The translators may prove to have value if they can offload them, perhaps to AM's that want an FM presence no matter how challenged but, admittedly, I cannot conceive of who might be interested at this point.

    I wasn't aware of restrictions built in, but that could markedly impact the performance of the station.

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