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Broadcast M&A market in Q4 dominated by TV deals

Radio accounts for $51.9 million and TV for $848.1 million in Q4 2019 deal volume

Monterey, Calif., Jan. 03 2020 — U.S. broadcast station mergers and acquisitions (M&A) volume reached a total of $900.0 million in the fourth quarter of 2019 as tracked by Kagan, a media research group within S&P Global Market Intelligence. The TV market registered two transactions above the $100 million mark and a number of mid-sized deals. The radio market delivered its lowest quarterly deal volume since the second quarter of 2016.

The largest TV deal of the quarter was announced in November. Fox Corp. agreed to pay $352 million to Nexstar Media Group Inc. for three stations in in Seattle and Milwaukee. Nexstar acquired the stations as part of its Tribune Media deal, which closed in September. In return, Nexstar will receive two Fox-owned stations in the Charlotte, N.C., market for $45 million.

The second-largest TV deal took place in October, when Allen Media Broadcasting, the broadcasting division of Entertainment Studios Inc., announced an agreement with USA Television Holdings LLC and USA Television MidAmerica Holdings LLC to acquire 11 TV stations in nine small markets for $290.0 million.

In the fourth quarter's third-largest deal, in December, NRJ Holdings LLC announced the sale of seven DTV stations and one Class-A station to RNN National LLC for $81.2 million.

The radio market registered three deals between $3 million and $5 million. On Dec. 30, TEGNA Inc. announced the sale of AM/FM combo KFMB in San Diego to Local Media San Diego Acquisition LLC for $5.0 million.

McKibbin Media Group Inc. announced the purchase of three stations in Michigan's Lansing-East Lansing market from Jackson Radio Works Inc. for $3.8 million. Horne Broadcasting LLC is buying five stations and one translator in the Fayetteville, Ark., market from Carroll County Broadcasting Inc. and Hog Radio Inc. for $3.4 million.

The year closed with a total deal volume of $7.71 billion. Radio registered a deal volume of $1.26 billion, 54% more than in 2018, and TV announcements totaled $6.52 billion, 17% less than in 2018.

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