Cumulus Planning All-News In Atlanta, LA & Minneapolis?

Cumulus All News AllNews 95.5 KLOS Los Angeles 106.7 WYAY Atlanta 105.7 WGVX Minneapolis 100.5 WNNXUpdate 4/27: Cumulus officially announces 106.7 WYAY Atlanta will flip to All-News in Mid-May.

Update 4/9: A few more domains registered over the weekend clarify the story a bit. More domains were added with AllNews prefixes for 680, 1230, 1340, 93.7, 100.5, and 101.5. Pair those with the previous 98.9, 99.7, and 106.7 and you have every station operated by Cumulus or Dickey Broadcasting in Atlanta with the exception of 97.9. This could be Cumulus trying to mask the potential destination of the News station in the market or simply playing games with us.

These additional domains should have no effect on the registrations for 95.5 Los Angeles and 105.7 Minneapolis.

We were also reminded that Cumulus is in the process of launching an in-house Traffic service with Radiate Media. John Dickey has made it a company goal to utilize in-house programming as much as possible. With News programming they will not be reliant on syndicated talk shows or music licensing.

Original Report 4/6: Cumulus appears to be preparing to get into the All-News business in a big way.

A number of domains registered anonymously this week by the company’s usual registrar lineup with underperforming Cumulus stations in five markets. Three of the markets can easily be identified as Los Angeles, Atlanta, and Minneapolis/St. Paul.

The first registration points to Classic Rock KLOS Los Angeles. CBS runs News programming on 1070 KNX but has not shown any indication of moving the station to FM. KNX and Clear Channel’s market leading Talk 640 KFI would be the primary competition for an All News outlet on 95.5. KLOS registered a 2.7 share in the February PPM’s. Cumulus also owns 95.5’s in New York, Nashville, Reno, Lafayette, and Savannah that seem like lesser options for various reasons.

Next up is Atlanta via Currently Classic Hits “Atlanta’s Greatest Hits 106.7” WYAY, the station was recently left behind in the old Citadel studios when the rest of Cumulus’ stations were consolidated into one building. Atlanta is the largest market with no station programming news blocks outside of morning drive where Cox’ 750/95.5 WSB runs it. WYAY was 17th in the market last month with a 2.0 share. Other Cumulus stations on 106.7 are located in New Orleans, Harrisburg, Columbia, and Green Bay.

Which takes us to what is now AC “Love 105” WGVZ Eden Prairie/Minneapolis and its suburban simulcasts 105.1 WGVX Lakeville and 105.3 WGVY Cambridge. With the registration of, Cumulus is preparing to take on CBS News/Talk 830 WCCO. Love 105 has shown growth since the flip of CBS’ “Lite 102.9” WLTE to Country on December 25. The other Cumulus 105.7’s are in York, PA and Fayetteville, AR.

We’re not 100% sure what markets the other two registrations are for as there are multiple possibilities for each. would appear to be for struggling Conservative Talk WKIM Memphis, but the hole is not as obvious as the other markets. The rest of Cumulus’ stations on 98.9 are located in Atlanta, Oklahoma City, Pueblo, Tallahassee, Worcester, and Lennox, SD.

The last market appears to be Nashville’s 99.7 WWTN where was registered, which is 7th in the market with a 5.4 share. Another possibility could be WEAN-FM Wakefield-Peacedale, RI which simulcasts 630 WPRO Providence. The other 99.7’s in the Cumulus portfolio are in Abilene, Shreveport, and the Quad Cities.

Cumulus began its News programming push by transitioning KGO San Francisco and KLIF Dallas to News in drive times while retaining talk in other dayparts. Those are branded as “News & Information”. Using the “All News” moniker on these domains appears to indicate the new launches will be more news centric than those.

Cumulus Co-COO John Dickey was quoted in Radio Ink this week that “people are fatigued (with talk radio). We can see that in ratings in these talk stations.” A shift towards News based programming would steer these stations away from that fatigue.

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  1. Joseph says

    I could see 99.7 in Providence go all-news, with the FM simulcast of WPRO-630 moving to WPRO-92.3 (currently a Top-40/CHR station); but I don’t think it’s very likely. WPRO-FM has been a Top-40 station for almost 38 years, and is one of the top-rated stations in the market.

  2. Bill says

    Roddy Freeman from Atlanta wrote on the ATL radio-info board that this was indeed a head fake. A head fake for what? Format flip?

  3. Jeremy says

    Woo another fad format…

  4. CC says

    Might also be a head fake in Minneapolis too. Already too many talk and news options. Besides Love 105 as an AC has been doing better, as noted.

  5. MattParker says

    Merlin’s track record so-far offers little encouragement to the idea of start-up FM all-news stations. And there’s still the inherent problem of short TSL for all news stations. Yes, people are “fatigued” with talk radio but everybody keeps doing same old, same old. The only fresh approach to talk is NJ 101.5 but despite some 20 years of success, nobody else seems to want to try it.

  6. UrgentNeed says

    What is this “certainty” of format changes based on domain registrations? Grains of salt needed here.

    1. Lance Venta says

      Nobody said it was a guarantee, however if you were to look upon our previous Domain Reports ( you’ll see dozens of format changes we’ve reported on weeks before they took place. Nothing is a guarantee, but so far in 2012 our domain insight posts have been accurate in predicting 16 of 20 changes with three of the ones that haven’t occurred potentially still pending. All three of our posts regarding Cumulus stations have taken place as we predicted. And that’s just 2012.

      We stand by our report that these domains were registered with the intent of use by Cumulus.

  7. Marco says

    Those AllNews links all seem to point to domain squatters.

    1. Lance Venta says

      The registrar uses the generic template that is also used by many a squatter. These domains were NOT registered by a squatter.

      1. Carl says

        Lance is usually the best and most reliable in his info. However, in SOME markets, maybe a News FM will not happen. Simply something there to throw off the competition so they can plan a bigger surprise…

  8. Ed Shane says

    I have had a ton of URLs registered just to hold them–and to deflect. BTW, they’re not in my name. Every company does it for self protection.

  9. Steve Varholy says

    With Roddy saying Atlanta is definitely NOT a potential candidate for the 106.7, and his sources are usually pretty good, betting money maybe on WTCB Orangeburg/Columbia (SC). Clear Channel put its News/Talk WVOC onto a Class A FM the beginning of the year. Cumulus has News/Talk on a 5kwAM but it is highly directional. WTCB has been ailing as an AC and is 100kw. With Clear Channel not having a Class C FM to do NewsTalk on, flipping WTCB to News/Talk may present the chance to make WVOC a perennial runner-up.

  10. Bill says

    Cbs is gonna get involed and take Jack fm off the air in Minneapolis

  11. David Leavitt says

    In Boise, Cumulus is running a simulcast of the ESPN Sports format on an AM and FM. The AM Station seems ripe for a flip to me.

  12. MattParker says

    The news from Philly makes me wonder if Cumulus might really be planning on FM talk, featuring their own syndicated Mike Huckabee.

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