Share This Post

Sandton Capital Given One Year To End Fredericksburg Crossownership

Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star Sandton Capital 93.3 WFLS 96.9 The Rock WWUZ 99.3 The Vibe WVBXWhen Sandton Capital acquired the assets of the Free-Lance Star Publishing Company out of bankruptcy in May, the group lost its grandfathered ability to hold both newspaper and broadcast properties in the same market.

The company owns the epnomynous Free-Lance Star newspaper in Fredericksburg along with a radio group including Country 93.3 WFLS, Classic Rock “96.9 The Rock” WWUZ, Rhythmic CHR “99.3 The Vibe” WVBX, and Talk/Sports 1350 WNTX/96.5 W243BS. Sandton applied for a waiver to continue the cross-ownership until the FCC acts on a proposal
in the pending 2014 Quadrennial Review to eliminate the newspaper/radio cross-ownership ban permanently. The FCC rejected the waiver request’s three primary arguments on preceding grounds.

Instead the FCC has given Sandton a one-year extension of their waiver through November 26, 2015 to come into compliance. By that time they will need to divest of either the newspaper, radio stations, or hope that the FCC has removed the cross-ownership ban by that date.

Profile photo of Lance Venta
Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

1 Comment

  1. Profile photo of Eric Jon Magnuson


    About a day ago, Sandton issued a statement saying that it would sell off the radio stations.

    Even though the conventional wisdom right now appears to be that Alpha may be the leading candidate, I can’t shake the feeling that an owner who has a cluster in D.C. may decide to make a purchase here–and to possibly start (or expand) a simulcast. (WFLS itself, though, almost certainly wouldn’t be touched.) While the D.C. and Fredericksburg metros do overlap in Stafford Co., would any of the stations in this group count against the ownership cap for D.C.? WFLS and WNTX are licensed to the (independent) city of Fredericksburg itself; WVBX is licensed to (unincorporated) Spotsylvania (within the eponymous county); and WWUZ is licensed to Bowling Green (an incorporated town in Caroline Co.).

Leave a Reply

Lost Password

Register