NRG Media Acquires Woodward’s Waterloo Stations

NRG Media Woodward Communications 105.7 KOKZ Rock 108 KFMW 1540 KXEL 1330 KWLO Waterloo Cedar RapidsUpdate 8/25: NRG Media will be paying $3.55 million for the four Woodward stations in Waterloo.

Original Report 8/22: NRG Media has acquired Woodward Communication’s four stations in Waterloo, IA for an as yet undisclosed price.

Included in the sale are Classic Hits 105.7 KOKZ, Active Rock “Rock 108” 107.9 KFMW, Sports “1330 ESPN Radio” KWLO and News/Talk 1540 KXEL.

NRG Media CEO Mary Quass said, “We are delighted to have the opportunity to add the stations in Waterloo/Cedar Falls to our platform. We continue to look for great radio properties that are located in the Midwest and are an integral part of the communities they serve. NRG is pleased to be adding these strong stations to our company of great local radio stations.”

“WCI is pleased to be able to transition the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Radio Group to NRG, a well-known, community-oriented radio broadcast company with a great Midwestern culture and presence”, said WCI President/CEO Tom Woodward. “Our strategic plans and related growth goals positioned the sale of the Waterloo properties and we salute the loyal, talented and dedicated staff we were fortunate to work with. We will continue to operate, grow and enhance our award-winning, seven station radio group in the Appleton/Green Bay, Wisconsin markets which we’ve owned since the late 70’s.”

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  1. theoutsider says

    Woodward only had them for about 2 1/2 years. I think they paid $2 million or so for the four stations. Another site is saying that they are selling the stations to NRG for $3.5 million. If true, that is a nice ROI and a sale would make sense. Woodward did make some long needed changes which might have made the stations more desirable. NRG is based in Cedar Rapids and will finally have stations that can be picked up there as KFMW and KOKZ have a good sized Cedar Rapids audience and they do have a number of Cedar Rapids advertisers. KFMW does remotes from Cedar Rapids on a regular basis. KXEL also comes in well in Cedar Rapids.

    1. theoutsider says

      I stand corrected, they bought the stations for $3.5 million and may break even on the deal. It always seemed odd that they would buy radio stations in Waterloo a few years after they sold what at one time were they flagship radio properties in Dubuque where they still own the daily newspaper.

    2. Charles Everett says

      Why would Waterloo radio, even a full-power Class C from a 2,000-foot TV tower, need to target Cedar Rapids? The two cities are like 70 miles apart and share nothing in common other than they’re in the same TV market. We don’t know about the size of the audience either because Woodward did not subscribe to Nielsen Audio.

      KXEL is a non-factor in Cedar Rapids because it has much the same right-wing format as WMT.

      1. theoutsider says

        The Cedar Rapids metro is almost twice as large than Waterloo/Cedar Falls with a higher income and NRG is picking up a station that can get them some of that additional revenue. Over the past few years when Bahakel owned KFMW and was a subscriber to the book, KFMW had a larger audience in Cedar Rapids than KRNA. That may have had something to do with what Cumulus did to KRNA during the years that they owned it. Conversely, KZIA at one time had a sizable audience in Waterloo/Cedar Falls back in the days before KKHQ picked up the CHR format. Other than carrying University of Northern Iowa football and basketball, KXEL hasn’t been much of a factor in Waterloo either for the same reasons. It is more right wing than WMT, which at least has a few more hours of somewhat non partisian locally oriented shows.

        Do you see any additional changes? Woodward did make a few over the past 2 1/2 years. Refocusing KOKZ to late 60’s to mid 80’s Classic Hits, streaming KOKZ and KFMW, dropping Oldies on KWLO in order to bring ESPN Radio into the market and starting a local news show on KXEL.

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