Wednesday, August 16, 2006

More on that WRQK/Clear Channel/Cumulus Deal

UPDATE 8/16/06 8:50 PM: OMW has learned about at least part of what comprises "the other half" of the Clear Channel/Cumulus swap, which locally involves rock WRQK/106.9 "Rock 107" in Canton ending up with Clear Channel.

At least from what we've heard so far, Clear Channel will send a number of Michigan outlets to Cumulus in exchange for WRQK - stations in Battle Creek and Ann Arbor.

We hear from at least two sources that all of the Clear Channel stations in those two Michigan markets will be swapped to Cumulus as a result of the deal involving WRQK locally. OMW hears that employees at those current Clear Channel outlets in Michigan got word of their end of the deal today.

We still haven't nailed down what other stations may be involved in what's looking to be a rather complex swap, or what cash considerations may be involved.

One of the Ann Arbor Clear Channel stations was involved in a call letter swap that looked very odd at the time.

It now appears that its legendary calls of WWWW - which have resided on Ann Arbor's "W4Country" - were planted on a Clear Channel AM station in Detroit in order to hang onto the call letters within the company, due to this transaction. The "W4Country" calls and format once resided in Detroit.

The reason the calls were warehoused on the former WDTW(AM) Dearborn MI - which still calls itself "WDTW" on the air - is now clear. With Clear Channel losing control of the Ann Arbor country FM now known as "W4Country", they are keeping it on one of their AMs until they need to use it later on another property.

We're hearing other rumors about other parts of the WRQK/CC/Cumulus swap, but we've only been able to confirm the information we'll hang onto this one, for now...


Anonymous said...

WRQK certainly isn't worth all the CC stations in Battle Creek and Ann Arbor. There's got to be more coming from Cumulus to CC.

Anonymous said...

I would certainly value WRQK over any of the CC Cleveland stations, and that would include WMMS.

Anonymous said...

I was channel surfing and I heard john trout say the oddest thing on WHOT-FM (WRQK's soon to be former sister station). He said something to the effect that they were broadcasting in HD? Can this be confirmed? It was at 11:20 AM

Anonymous said...

All Access has a story on HOT's HD in todays news section.

Anonymous said...

thank you very much for pointing that out

Anonymous said...

from all access : "WHOT First With HD
CUMULUS Top 40 WHOT (HOT 101)/YOUNGSTOWN PD JOHN TROUT tells ALL ACCESS his station became the first in EASTERN OHIO to begin broadcasting in HD. "We threw the switch at 5p yesterday (8/16). WHOT has been broadcasting here in the MAHONING VALLEY for 50 years. There have been numerous milestones over the course of that time. I’m sure the other 2 PDs in the station's history could explain some of them better than I can. As HOT 101’s 3rd PD in 51 years, along with DICK THOMPSON and TOM PAPPAS, I too now have a milestone in broadcast transmission to report." end quote

steve said...

Today at a nascar autograph event sponsored by GFS Marketplace in Jackson,michigan A live remote crew from WWWW..uh I mean WFOR FM 102.9 was there ,after I got Dale Jarrett's autograph, I asked the Jock and their PR person about the reports (crediting Ohio Media Watch for breaking the story) of Cumulus swaping stations with Clear Channel,their expression was PRICELESS.

Dumfounded! they asked if I was in radio , I told them no,I am a listener.

But they said that they have yet to hear anything from corporate about it, but I could tell it was "Deer in the headlights" mode.

Same with WTKA as well

Ohio Media Watch said...

It's our understanding that employees in the CC/Ann Arbor and Battle Creek buildings have already been told of the pending swap. We don't know how far that notification has gone.

We've also gotten independent confirmation from three different sources that the clusters in question are in the mix here.

About the only folks who haven't heard news in some official capacity are, well, at a certain Canton building...