Townsquare Media solidifies its position as nation's 3rd largest radio station owner


Company picking up 71 stations from Cumulus and Peak Broadcasting as Cumulus absorbs national syndicator Dial Global

Townsquare Media, which owns seven radio stations in the Tri-State (WKDQ, WGBF AM and FM, WJLT, WDKS, WBKR and WOMI), announced Friday morning that it will be purchasing an additional 71 radio stations from Cumulus Media and Peak Broadcasting.

The move comes as Cumulus announced it will be purchasing syndicator Dial Global for $260 million (see below).

Both parts of the deal had been rumored earlier in the week.

From Cumulus outright, the company will acquire 53 stations (three of which will go into a divestiture trust) in the following markets: Battle Creek, Mich.; Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Danbury, Conn.; Faribault-Owatonna, Minn.; Kalamazoo, Mich.; Lansing, Mich.; Portland, Maine; Portsmouth-Dover-Rochester, N.H.; Quad Cities, Iowa-Ill.; Rochester, Minn.; Rockford, Ill.; and Waterloo, Iowa. The Peak stations are in Fresno, Calif. and Boise, Idaho; Townsquare will trade the five-station Fresno cluster to Cumulus in exchange for Cumulus' 15 stations in Dubuque, Iowa and Poughkeepsie, N.Y.

All told, Townsquare will add 71 stations to its fold, with three of them assigned to the aforementioned divestiture trust. The deal makes Townsquare, with 312 stations in 66 markets, solidly the country's third-largest station owner, behind Cumulus and Clear Channel.

“These transactions represent the continued evolution of Townsquare Media into one of the nation’s largest local media companies and allow us to reach a scale which opens the door to new strategic opportunities,” commented Townsquare chairman/CEO Steven Price. “The assets we are adding to our portfolio are market leading brands with strong competitive positions in their respective small and mid-sized markets. We are excited by the opportunity to deploy our differentiated local-media strategy across a broader footprint in order to better serve our communities and our advertising clients.”

Closing is expected by year's end.

CUMULUS BUYING DIAL GLOBAL FOR $260M
As part of what the company calls its effort to "reshape [its] footprint focused on the top 100 markets," Cumulus Media will buy syndicator Dial Global for $260 million, it was announced Friday.

Dial Global provides music, news, sports and other programming to thousands of U.S. stations, including many right here in the Tri-State, such as Sunday Night Football and other popular radio programs, along with AP Radio News, NBC News Radio and others.

“These transactions give us the necessary scale to provide the marketing and enterprise solutions our advertising and affiliate partners require,” said Lew Dickey, CEO of Cumulus. “Our goal is to be the leading producer of premium audio content distributed through multiple platforms while continuing to build our broadcast platform in the top 100 U.S. markets.”

As with the Townsquare deal, the Dial Global purchase is set to close by the end of 2013.

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