Radio Deal Volume Exceeds $300 Million For Q1 2014
April 8, 2014 at 4:21 AM (PT)
Broadcast station M&A (Merger & Acquisition) volume reached $3.65 billion in Q1 2014, up from $2.68 billion in Q1 of 2013, according to the SNL KAGAN Quarterly Broadcast M&A data. TV station consolidation once again drove the trading volume. A total of 309 stations traded, of which 202 were radio and 107 were TV stations. The average TV station price in Q1 was $31.1 million, vs. just $1.6 million for radio.
Radio deal volume exceeded $300 million for only the third time in the last eight quarters. The top deal was the $131.0 million/8.5x cash flow sale of NEW YORK's WBLS/WLIB-A from YMF MEDIA LLC to EMMIS COMMUNICATIONS CORP., followed by the $74.0 million sale of ten stations from SOUTH CENTRAL COMMUNICATIONS CORPORATION to SUMMITMEDIA, LLC.
Compared to the 2013 average of 7.0x, the average radio cash flow multiple rose by half a point in Q1 14. The outsize radio deal volume in 2011 was due to the CUMULUS/CITADEL deal valued at $2.28 billion and the HUBBARD/BONNEVILLE transaction at $505 million.
On the TV side, Q1 of 2014 continued the previous year’s pattern of more than a billion dollars’ worth of activity each quarter. The largest deal by price, the merger between MEDIA GENERAL, INC. and LIN MEDIA LLC, was valued at $2.6 billion. The 9.0x forward multiple of this transaction pushed the overall average for Q1 2014 to 8.9x. Without the LIN/MEG merger, the TV multiple would have been 8.5x, which is still 0.3 points higher than 2013's average.