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Media company buying TV station

April 25, 2018
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TV station sees ownership change
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A local TV station is being sold.

Standard Media Group, an affiliate of New York-based Standard General, said yesterday it entered into a definitive agreement with Sinclair Broadcast Group to purchase nine television stations in seven markets for $441.7 million.

WXMI Fox 17, which covers the Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo and Battle Creek areas, is included in the deal.

The acquisition is part of an effort by Sinclair Broadcast Group to “divest stations in connection with the closing of its merger with Tribune Media Company.”

WXMI is currently under the ownership of Tribune Media Company.

The Standard Media Group purchase is expected to be completed in the summer after the closing of the Sinclair-Tribune merger, according to a spokesperson for Standard Media Group.

There is no intention to make station-level staffing changes.

After the transaction, Deb McDermott will be the CEO of Standard Media Group. She was previously the COO of Media General and the president and CEO of Young Broadcasting.

McDermott has experience in acquiring more than 90 stations throughout her career.

"The stations we are acquiring in this transaction have tremendous potential in excellent markets,” McDermott said. “We are excited to work with the talented station teams established by Sinclair and Tribune and grow the business for years to come.

“Following this transaction, Standard Media will be well positioned to make further accretive acquisitions, and we believe there is a compelling market opportunity to create another large player in the consolidating broadcast TV industry.”

RBC Capital Markets acted as exclusive financial advisor on the deal, and Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman acted as legal advisor to Standard Media Group.

RBC Capital Markets is the sole arranger of committed debt financing for the transaction.

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