published Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

WTVC-TV and Channel 9 being sold to Sinclair Broadcast Group

  • photo
    WTVC Channel 9's former director Bob Nolan takes a break from making templates in this file photo.

Chattanooga’s ABC television affiliate, WTVC-TV9, should get a new owner by next spring, pending FCC and shareholder approval.

The Baltimore-based Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. announced today it will buy the parent company of Channel 9, the broadcast division of Freedom Communications, for $385 million. Freedom Communications emerged from bankruptcy in April and the sale would transfer ownership of eight TV stations in seven markets.

“We believe our expertise and presence will enable us to improve the stations’ competitive position and profitability,” Sinclair CEO David Smith said in his announcement today.

Smith said the purchase will boost Sinclair’s presence in West Palm Beach, Fla., Freedom’s largest market, but also “allows us to expand our middle market position and network diversification.”

The sale is subject to approval by sharehodlers of Freedom by next Tuesday and is still subject to approval from the Federal Communications Commission.

The Freedom-owned television stations included in the sale are in West Palm Beach, Fla., Grand Rapid, Mich., Albany, New York, Chattanooga, Lansing, Mich., Medford-Dlamath Falls, Ore., and Beaumont, Tex.

WTVC-TV9 has been owned by Freedom Communications since 1984.

about Dave Flessner...

Dave Flessner is the business editor for the Times Free Press. A journalist for 35 years, Dave has been business editor and projects editor for the Chattanooga Times Free Press, city editor for The Chattanooga Times, business and county reporter for the Chattanooga Times, correspondent for the Lansing State Journal and Ingham County News in Michigan, staff writer for the Hastings Daily Tribune in Nebraska, and news director for WCBN-FM in Michigan. Dave, a native ...

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