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Granite sets KNTV financing

Granite Broadcasting said it has received financing and renegotiated its payment schedule with NBC for its reverse compensation deal for NBC affiliation at Bay Area station KNTV.

Granite said NBC will modify the reverse compensation payment terms to defer half the $61 million until 2005, three years after Granite is scheduled to become the San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose NBC affiliate, and pay half early. Granite said it has received commitments for a new $205 million senior credit facility led by Goldman, Sachs & Co. with which it will repay in full existing senior bank debt of approximately $114 million, "continue to prepare KNTV to become the San Francisco NBC affiliate on January 1, 2002 and develop its two top-ten market WB stations."

Don Cornwell, Granite's chief executive officer said the deals give it funding through 2003, when its next payment to NBC will be due. In addition, Granite and NBC have commenced a new secondary affiliation for KNTV, under which KNTV immediately gains first rights on NBC programming pre-empted by current local affiliate KRON-TV. Granite said the deal "serves as a head start to the formal launch and signifies NBC's commitment to make the transition a success."- Dan Trigoboff