Alpha & Matrix Sell Pair In Suburban Chicago
When Digity acquired NextMedia, a pair of suburban Chicago stations were transferred from a divestiture trust to Matrix Broadcasting in 2014 for $5,527,500 to stay under the ownership caps. Following Alpha Media’s acquisition of Digity in 2015, Alpha took over the Shared Services Agreement between for those stations.
Matrix Broadcasting would file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in March 2018 with owner Peter Handy claiming both assets and liabilities between $1 million and $10 million. To resolve the bankruptcy Matrix and Alpha Media have agreed to a series of deals to settle their claims.
To remain under the ownership caps, WFXF will be spun-off to Educational Media Foundation for $900,000. WFXF will join a growing EMF operation that includes “K-Love” on 97.9 WCKL Chicago, 89.1 WOKL Round Lake Beach and 92.5 WCLR Dekalb plus “Air 1” on WJKL Glendale Heights and 88.1 WAIW Wheaton as well as a number of smaller signals in the region.
Alpha Media will retain WZSR and instead divest Classic Rock “Q-Rock 100.7” WRXQ Coal City/Joliet to Steven Seline’s Walnut Radio Illinois for $300,000. Walnut Radio does not own any other properties in Illinois but owns six stations in and around Omaha NE. Walnut Radio will enter into a Shared Services Agreement with Alpha.
WFXF and WZSR serve the northwestern suburbs of Chicago while WRXQ covers the southwestern edge of the market around Joliet. WFXF is currently home to longtime Chicago morning host Eddie Volkman (previously of WBBM-FM and WJMK).