Merlin Sells WRXP/New York To CBS; WFAN To Use Frequency To Simulcast
October 8, 2012 at 10:02 AM (PT)
ALL ACCESS has learned that MERLIN MEDIA has sold Alternative WRXP/NEW YORK to CBS RADIO for a reported $75 million. In a press release, CBS RADIO said that it will take over 101.9 FM in an LMA with a simulcast of Sports WFAN-A. CBS RADIO presently owns three AM and three FM signals in the market along with WCBS-TV (CBS 2) and WLNY-TV (TV 10/55).
“This is an extremely exciting opportunity to expand our radio presence in the nation’s largest market,” said CBS RADIO President and CEO DAN MASON. “Sports is a very popular format and a huge growth category for our business. As a result of this new asset, we look forward to THE FAN building on its position as the leading sports radio franchise in the country.”
In a memo to staffers, MERLIN CEO RANDY MICHAELS wrote:
Rumors about MERLIN have been rampant. Today we are announcing the sale of WRXP/NEW YORK. Many talented people have worked hard to create a terrific Alternative station, but our obligation to retire significant debt necessitates this decision. Thanks to everyone for your hard work with NEW ROCK 101.9. The formats initial success made the decision very difficult.
There is a very positive impact of this sale on our balance sheet. This change allows us to increase focus on operating a successful company. MERLIN is not for sale, and is looking at possible additions to our portfolio. Let’s focus building the CHICAGO and PHILADELPHIA stations into great, profitable brands and great places to work.