Articles about "Media General"


LIN Media, Media General plan broadcast merger

LIN Media and Media General announced Friday morning that they are merging to form the second largest pure-play U.S. broadcasting group.

If the FCC approves the merger, the new combined group will reach 46 markets or about 23 percent of the American population.

Half of the stations involved are affiliated with one of the big four networks.

At least a few of the stations may have to be sold off or run by other companies to avoid FCC restrictions on cross ownership in a single market.

It is just the latest in a flurry of acquisitions and mergers in the TV industry that has seen Belo broadcast and Gannett merge and earlier, Media General and Young Broadcasting combined forces. Other players including Meredith, Journal, Tribune, NBC Universal and Sinclair have been recent buyers, too.… Read more

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Media General-New Young Broadcasting merger gets FCC, shareholder approval

Media General | Richmond Times-Dispatch

The FCC Friday approved Media General’s planned merger with New Young Broadcasting Holding Co. The companies plan to close the deal Nov. 12, a Media General release says.

On Thursday, Media General’s shareholders approved the deal, which was first announced in June. Significantly for the company, the merger means it will soon own WRIC-TV in Richmond, where the company will remain based after the merger. FCC rules once prevented Media General from owning a television station in Richmond, as it used to own the Richmond Times-Dispatch.… Read more

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Family control will end at Media General following merger

Richmond Times-Dispatch

The Bryan family will no longer control Media General if a planned merger with New Young Broadcasting occurs. The deal will end a streak going back to the end of the 19th century, when Lewis Ginter gave The (Richmond, Va.) Daily Times to Joseph Bryan.

The agreement will eliminate the “dual-class stock structure that has given [J. Stewart Bryan III], the company’s chairman and former CEO, voting power to elect 70 percent of its board of directors,” John Reid Blackwell reports.

Bryan, the great-grandson of the founder of the newspaper company that grew to become Media General, will remain the combined company’s chairman. He has said he will own about 1 million shares, but his holdings won’t put him among the five largest shareholders — the smallest has about a 5 percent stake — in the new company, regulatory filings show.

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Media General reports net loss, CNN has higher ratings

Media General | TVNewsCheck | Los Angeles Times

Media General reported a net loss of $16 million in the second quarter of 2013, but revenues grew in several advertising categories, including automotive, furniture and home improvement.

Revenue from political advertising fell 86 percent, not exactly a surprise in an odd-numbered year. Also missing this year: Olympics revenue. “Total station revenues in the third quarter this year will decrease due to the near absence of these revenues,” the company says in its earnings release.

The company spent $19.5 million on interest in the second quarter. Retransmission fees increased, as did digital revenue.

Time Warner announced its second quarter earnings Wednesday, reporting a 10 percent rise in revenue. CNN’s ratings were up “almost 70 percent in its key demo,” the company’s release says.… Read more

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Warren Buffett

Warren Buffett’s big payday, and other notes on Media General’s merger with Young

Few paid much attention to the blandly worded announcement a week ago of a merger between Media General and New Young Broadcasting. That was no surprise — an agreement between two midsize local broadcasting companies isn’t nearly as big a deal as, say, Gannett’s $2.2 billion acquisition of Belo today.

But there were at least three spicy stories lurking beneath the corporate-speak:

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway cashed in big

In May 2012 Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway bought all of Media General’s newspapers except the Tampa Tribune.

That deal included two related transactions.

First, Berkshire Hathaway loaned Media General $445 million to refinance a crushing debt load coming due. The initial interest rate was an eye-popping 10.5 percent.

Second, as thanks for saving Media General from that life-threatening financial distress, BH received penny-a-share warrants to acquire 19.9 percent of the company — 4.6 million shares in all.… Read more

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Media General to merge with New Young Broadcasting

Richmond Times-Dispatch | Bloomberg News

Media General and the New Young Broadcasting company of Nashville, Tenn., will merge, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reports.

The new company, which will be called Media General, will own 30 television stations. It will be based in Richmond, Va., where Media General currently operates.… Read more

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Retiring Media General CEO was ‘always attempting to look to the next mountaintop’

Richmond BizSense
In an exit interview with Michael Schwartz, outgoing Media General CEO Marshall Morton says he’ll have no difficulty “unplugging” — ” I was always attempting to look to the next mountaintop and then decide what pathway would be the most productive one to get there,” Morton says — and that selling the conglomerate’s newspapers to Warren Buffett was a “relief”:

In the past, if we encountered two years of downturn in revenue, we’d have said, “It’s a cycle. It’ll turn around. It always has.” But I did worry about the newspapers. These were our long-term employees who worked hard in a business that had a lot of value in our community. But we just were not able to make any headway. They did induce concern on my part.

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Local advertising grows at Media General, 3rd quarter earnings report shows

Media General
Media General reported strong revenue from automotive, political and Olympics advertising in the third quarter of 2012, but interest on the company’s debt and losses from what remained of its newspaper division drove it to a loss of $30.3 million.

Operating income was up nearly $18 million over the third quarter of 2011. Advertising revenue was up 20 percent at the company’s TV station websites, where local advertising in particular was up 28 percent. Across its properties, local advertising revenue was up 15.6 percent, to $47 million. Station costs were up, in part because of higher sales commissions, the earnings report says. The company has reduced expenses slightly, partly due to corporate layoffs announced in July, and expects more revenue growth in the fourth quarter.… Read more

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Tampa Tribune sold to investment firm

The Tampa Tribune | Tampa Bay Times | MarketWatch
Media General sold The Tampa Tribune to Revolution Capital Group, the companies announced Monday. The sales price was $9.5 million.

“It’s a bittersweet day for Media General to complete the sale of its last remaining newspaper group,” Media General CEO Marshall Morton said in a press release. “We believe strongly in the value of local content,” Revolution managing partner Robert Loring said in the release.

Loring told Tampa Tribune reporter Richard Mullins “We are definitely in this for the long haul. We don’t flip businesses.”… Read more

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Media General President & CEO Morton to retire

Marshall N. Morton will step down as CEO of Media General at the end of 2012, the company announced Wednesday. George L. Mahoney will replace him. Mahoney, the company’s release says, “has been responsible for Media General’s digital media and mobile operations, including content initiatives that attract new audiences to all of the company’s platforms and programs to create new revenue streams.” Morton has been with the company for 23 years.

Media General sold all but one of its newspapers to Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway in May, a deal that refocused the company as primarily a broadcast-television concern and allowed it to refinance its very large debt. Last month the company reported dramatically higher revenue and laid off 75 employees.

“Media General has a very promising future as a television broadcaster, with our portfolio of top ranked stations located in attractive markets,” Mahoney said in the press release.… Read more

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