Entercom Communications has announced a definitive agreement to acquire AC WBEB (101.1 MORE FM)/Philadelphia from Jerry Lee Radio, LLC for $57.5 million in cash. The company also announced that it has entered into an agreement to divest Country WXTU (92.5 XTU)/Philadelphia to Beasley Broadcast Group for $38 million in cash. The transactions are immediately accretive to Entercom and are leverage neutral.
“We are very pleased to add the legendary WBEB, one of the country’s most recognized and awarded stations, to our group,” said David Field, President/CEO of Entercom. “It is a terrific addition to our lineup that will enhance our ability to serve our listeners, customers and the community. I tip my cap to Jerry Lee, one of the industry pioneers and a visionary leader who built B101 into such a special station and has done so much for radio over the decades. We are saddened to say goodbye to our colleagues at WXTU, but know that they will be in great hands.”
Caroline Beasley, CEO of Beasley Broadcast Group, said, “Our acquisition of WXTU-FM represents a strategically and financially compelling growth opportunity for our shareholders and further enhances our revenue and competitive position with a strong cluster of five FM and two AM stations in a key, top-ten market. Importantly, the addition of WXTU-FM is consistent with Beasley’s disciplined approach to growing our platform by executing accretive transactions that deliver valuable synergies and the potential for SOI margin improvement, all with a limited impact to our leverage.”
She continued, “As the former owner of WXTU-FM, Beasley originally launched the station’s country music format in 1983 against the advice of a number of industry pundits who believed it wouldn’t succeed in the Philadelphia market. Instead, the station thrived and resulted in our successful exchange of WXTU-FM in 2014, as part of a larger asset exchange agreement with CBS Radio. Today, WXTU-FM remains one of the best and most listened-to country music stations in America. We are proud of this heritage and confident in our ability to continue the growth and success of WXTU-FM as part of the Beasley family of stations.”
A Local Marketing Agreement for WXTU will begin Monday, July 23. The transactions are expected to close by the end of the third quarter of 2018.