TODAY'S HEADLINES / October 13, 2005
Baton Rouge TV stations to be sold
Breaking News: Two Baton Rouge television stations are among 23 put up for sale by their Lafayette-based owner. Wayne Elmore, CEO of Communications Corporation, confirms that an investment house has been hired to market the stations owned by Communications Corp. and White Knight Broadcasting. The two companies, though separate, are partly owned by family members. Communications Corp. owns Fox 44, White Knight owns NBC affiliate WVLA-33.
Elmore says investment house UBS of Los Angeles is brokering the deal, offering the stations in a package. So far, UBS has fielded 58 inquires from individuals and companies interested in purchasing the broadcasters. Elmore declined to say whether companies in Baton Rouge are interested in acquiring the stations, but sources say Raycom, which owns Channel 9, is interested in Fox 44. Nick Simonette, general manager of Channel 9, did not return a call seeking comment.
The sale of the two stations could lead to more vigorous competition in Baton Rouge. WVLA and Fox do not offer TV news; the acquiring company could add news broadcasts to compete against WBRZ and WAFB.
Elmore says the stations should be sold within nine months. Owners are selling the stations because it's a good time to cash out of the business, he says.
White Knight and Communications Corporation have stations in Lafayette, Shreveport, Alexandria, as well as cities in Texas and Indiana.
(Courtesy - BR Biz Report)