NBC’s sale of WTVJ Miami to Washington Post Co. is a bust. In a joint statement, the media companies said: “Given the current economic environment, and the delay in receiving the necessary regulatory approval, the deal has been terminated.”
The would-be sale, agreed on in July, was scheduled to close by the end of 2008. The parties had agreed on a $205 million price, according to an FCC disclosure. Many had figured on a considerably higher price.
Washington Post was seeking a duopoly in Miami.
“We are pleased to be able to reach an agreement to purchase such a historic station as WTVJ, the first TV station to broadcast in Florida,” Post Stations president and CEO Alan Frank said at the time of the agreement. “We look forward to both WPLG andWTVJ continuing to serve the south Florida community."
NBC put WTVJ and WVIT Hartford on the block in March. WVIT remains unsold too.
One person close to the negotiations said the break-up was simply a case of unfavorable economic conditions, and said it was mutual.
The FCC just last Friday announced it was increasing the opportunity for public comment on the proposed sale, which had been opposed by three members of Congress, among others.
Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.
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