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Is ESPN About To Make An FM Play in New York?

96.3 WQXR ESPN Radio 1050 WEPN WQEW New York Times

With the financial turmoil of the newspaper industry taking its toll on The New York Times Company, rumors have been spreading for a few months about the future of Classical 96.3 WQXR New York. The New York Daily News in January and the New York Post in April both reported on the possibility of their competitor having to sell-off one of its non-core assets.

We have a new wrinkle to add. ESPN Inc. registered 963espn.com, 963espnradio.com, and espn963radio.com earlier this week. By no means does this mean a deal is in place yet, but something is definitely brewing. ESPN parent Disney already has a relationship with The New York Times company as it acquired then-WQXR sister 1560 WQEW in December 1998 under a long-term lease with an option to purchase that was exercised in late 2006 to bring Radio Disney to New York.

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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.

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