Update 12/7: Merlin paid $22.5 Million for WKDN.
Original Report 12/6: As first reported by ChicagolandRadioAndMedia.com, Merlin Media has acquired 106.9 WKDN Camden, NJ/Philadelphia from Harold Camping’s Family Radio for an undisclosed price.
The purchase makes Philadelphia the third market and fourth station for Merlin joining 101.9 WEMP New York and 97.9 WLUP and 101.1 WIQI Chicago. All expectations have the station going All-News competing with CBS’ market leading 1060 KYW. Merlin acquired FMNewsPhiladelphia.com along with domains for many other markets earlier this summer.
It had been known that WKDN and 107.9 WFSI Annapolis, MD (which was sold to CBS last month) were on the market since the summer when they applied to return to commercial status.
WKDN is Class B operating with 38kW however it will need some engineering improvements to better compete in the market. Its tower site and ground system have been poorly maintained over the years and the station receives some adjacent channel interference on the western side of the Philadelphia market from Cumulus’ WMHX Hershey, PA. We would expect a long stunting period between the time Merlin takes control while the station upgrades before the launch of a permanent format.