Thursday, July 20, 2006

WKBN-TV/WYFX Sold?

OMW is hearing strong rumblings that Piedmont CBS/FOX combo WKBN/27 - WYFX/17-62 "FOX 17/62" Youngstown either has been sold, or will be sold in the very near future.

The station's been up on the market for some time. In fact, it appears to have constantly been on the market even going back to the days when GoCom Investments owned it - and a number of Youngstown radio stations which are now mostly owned by Clear Channel.

The station has seen the usual "parade" of potential buyers over the past two years. Either that, or a suit convention decided to make WKBN/WYFX a stop on their tour of Youngstown...

Who's the buyer? We hear that two names could be in the running:

* VestStar, a private equity investment firm out of Denver. Despite the name similarity, this is apparently NOT "NexStar", the well-known small market TV operator which runs two TV stations in the nearby Erie PA market. VestStar doesn't have a high profile, and we're unable to find mention of them being involved in TV station purchases.

* Raycom Media, the parent company of Cleveland CBS/UPN combo WOIO/19-WUAB/43.

The latter would certainly make sense as a candidate, as it would allow some sharing of resources (particularly news) between Cleveland, Youngstown and Toledo, where the company just picked up CBS affiliate WTOL/11 and is selling off NBC affiliate WNWO/24. Raycom's stations are mostly sub-top 50 market outlets...Cleveland is by far its largest market at number 16.

There may not be an announcement of the sale for a while, and we hear Piedmont will continue to run it likely through the end of the year. It'll certainly take a few months for the sale to be approved and finalized, at any rate...

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

to take a page from Roger B.:
"Word is..." major execs from Raycom are headed to town (or may already be here) to address the debacle with the Browns. Perhaps they were already scheduled to come up to Ohio anyway...

Ohio Media Watch said...

We had to remove a comment due to a link to another site. Please, do not re-post it.

We don't know Blogger's policy regarding such links, and we also removed it for potential negative legal ramifications. (OMW does not have lawyers on retainer.)

We apologize, but it had to go.

-OMW

Anonymous said...

Maybe someone here can clear this up. The new home of WYFX-CA ch 35 is very low power as compaired to ch 62. It does not even cover Mahoning country and the west side of town is out of its grade b contour. Does this mean they are not going to keep it or just have for fun? If raycom gets the two stations we will offically lose two stations as they will surely run it into the ground. Get ready for 27 action news. If raycom does buy ch 27, does this mean we will see CAVS games on the 2 stations since ch 43 is in the process of being thrown off valley cable systems for my ytv? BTW when will they stop airing first news at noon on both WKBN and WYFX at the same time? I get the rebroadcast on first news this morining but this is too much. I heard that WYTV is managed by Barrington Broadcasting (top excs of Benedek's new company after filing for bankruptcy) but is owned by Chelsey Television LLC. Could this be the start of some big changes in Youngstown TV. I have heard that MYYTV is up on Adelphia in North Western PA (just a blank screen with no programming) and they have been testing OTA on 36.2 fow a few weeks. Does this mean we could see the station by mid Augest to possible air the browns games since they are (atleast os of Tuesday) the preseason home of the browns? One other thing if you visit wbnx's website, and click on the wb memorabilia, you can see a preview of the new logo. I do hope it changes it looks loke WBCB's logo: simple and borining.

Ohio Media Watch said...

Question to the last commenter: Is 35 actually up?

The FCC database (which could be behind) shows the CP for it expired, and that Piedmont is asking for an emergency displacement STA to revive it...which hasn't been approved yet.

http://svartifoss2.fcc.gov/prod/cdbs/forms/prod/getattachment_exh.cgi?exhibit_id=342420

The lower power signal would make sense, though, as the application for 35 is only 8KW.

Anyway, Piedmont probably mostly depends on cable/satellite coverage for WYFX. And it sits as a subchannel on WKBN-DT. So, it's not going anywhere.

-OMW

Anonymous said...

As of today no ch 35 but Ch 62 is up and last nite here on the west side of Youngstown, that poor signal got over taken by WWJ in Detorit due to the conditions for e-skip again. As did froggy 104 got overtaken by CBS oldies 104.3 in Detroit. Why didn't WNEO sell ch 58? Until that signal was taken off the air, it was a alot more powerful than ch 62. W58AM is moving to ch 44 and become a low power digital repeater of ch 45. Trust me it is gone. That would of made a nice little station for WBCB the valley's wb. Yes with the execption of New Castle and Newton Falls, WYFX is on all the major systems in the area unlike WBCB which has New Castle and Newton Falls. Ch 29 out of Sharon cannot be seen, but they market it as a Y-town station. Ch 29 is WPCB's local repeater. Yet crossing path (the owner) buys airtime on WKBN latenite Monday's for a 30 minute show.

Anonymous said...

Please, say it ain't so! Raycom a potential buyer for WKBN? That means that Raycom will control both CBS outlets in NE Ohio. They have already done a wonderful job of running WOIO and WUAB into the ground! It would be a shame to see them do likewise to WKBN.

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