August 31, 2013

Portland radio group to be sold

WCYY 94.3, WHOM 94.9, WBLM 102.9 and Q97.9 will change hands pending regulatory approval.

By Leslie Bridgers lbridgers@pressherald.com
Staff Writer

PORTLAND - A group of four Portland radio stations, including Q97.9 and WBLM, is being sold, along with stations in 13 other markets, to finance another deal for their owner, Cumulus Media Inc.

click image to enlarge

Mark Curdo is a disc jockey for WCYY, one of four Portland radio stations that are being sold to Townsquare Media, based in Greenwich, Conn.

2011 file photo/John Patriquin

Atlanta-based Cumulus, the country's second-largest radio station operator, plans to buy Dial Global, a New York-based radio programming syndicator, for $260 million, the company announced Friday.

At the same time, Cumulus is selling 71 stations in 14 small and midsized markets, including WCYY 94.3, WHOM 94.9, WBLM 102.9 and Q97.9 in Portland, to Townsquare Media, based in Greenwich, Conn., for $238 million, according to the two companies.

Cumulus sold five radio stations in Bangor, four in Augusta and three in Presque Isle to Townsquare in 2012, along with 10 stations in Illinois.

Other markets included in the latest deal are Portsmouth, Dover and Rochester, N.H., Danbury, Conn., Lansing, Mich., and Rochester, Minn. Townsquare now owns 241 radio stations throughout the country.

Alex Berkett, executive vice president of Townsquare, said Friday that the Portland stations "are strong brands that are important to the community," which is "consistent with the type of stations we own in our portfolio and would like to own going forward."

He said the deal is pending regulatory approval and is expected to close by the end of the year.

Cumulus bought the Portland stations' former owner, Citadel Broadcasting Corp., in 2011 for $1.7 billion.

According to Cumulus' website, Q97.9, a hit music station, has the most listeners of the four stations, with about 170,000. 

Leslie Bridgers can be contacted at 791-6364 or at:

lbridgers@pressherald.com

 

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