Mercury Broadcasting's sale of KALL this month is a first in Utah radio. Never before has a station's frequency been sold to one group and the programming to another.
ABC/Disney purchased the AM-910 frequency for $3.7 million, and Clear Channel bought KALL's programming, call letters and intellectual property (personalities and programs) for a reported $2 million.
So what does this mean for listeners?
According to Stu Stanek, general manager for Salt Lake's Clear Channel Broadcasting, Tom Barberi, Jim Rome, Phil Hendrie, Jim Bohannan, "Outdoor Utah Today" and other KALL shows will move to the AM-700 frequency sometime in June. The frequency is currently home to KWLW, a classic-country music format. The station features a 50,000 watt daytime signal, which is 10 times KALL's current signal strength.
ABC/Disney, which provides Radio Disney programming to Citadel Broadcasting on AM-860, will take over the AM-910 frequency in July. (The FCC must still approve the frequency part of the deal.) Radio Disney is the most popular radio format for kids under age 12, but for the past several years the format has been losing money for Citadel, which was looking to drop the Radio Disney programming in July.
If the deal goes through and ABC/Disney does take over the AM-910 frequency, that leaves Citadel without programming on AM-860. The company is studying what to put there. Citadel already has KFNZ, an all-sports station, and a local news/talk format would be expensive. The best bet is probably some type of syndicated programming like that found on sister station KBER.
NEW KCPW MANAGER Cathy Ives, vice president of New Hampshire Public Radio, has been named KCPW's new general manager effective March 17.
She'll replace Chris Eisenberg, who will assist with the transition and assume other responsibilities as he prepares to pursue additional education this fall. He's been manager since 1997.
During her 12 years with New Hampshire Public Radio, Ives has concentrated on underwriting, management, marketing and special events. She's been responsible for tripling NHPR's revenue from $800,000 when she started to more than $2 million today and helping to grow the station, a community licensee like KCPW, into one of the most respected in the country.
"I am thrilled to be joining KCPW as the station's general manager," Ives said. "KCPW has a wonderfully professional staff and a commitment to local news and community service that mirrors my own. Salt Lake City is a gorgeous place to live and work."
KCPW (FM-88.3) serves more than 35,000 Salt Lake Valley listeners each week, according to Arbitron, with news and information from National Public Radio, Public Radio International and its own local news team.
"Talk of The City," a one-hour call-in program dedicated to issues facing the Wasatch Front, airs weekdays from 10-11 a.m.
RADIO HAPPENINGS The Salt Lake radio market has gone from the 35th largest broadcast market in the country in 2000 to the 32nd largest market. It includes an estimated 1,424,600 people.
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