Top Story

    Radio groups that operate in small and mid-size markets are revaluating whether they want to renew their ratings contracts in light of what they say is lower ROI from their ratings investments and a need to cut costs during a global pandemic that has severely eroded ad revenues. Group heads say the cost of ratings are out whack with their revenues, especially in today’s depressed marketplace. Read more

    Inside Radio News

    Cumulus Media’s stock price shot up 26% in Monday trading on the news that it signed a deal to sell its tower portfolio to Vertical Bridge for $213 million. In what Executive VP/CFO Frank Lopez-Balboa called “a fantastic deal,” Cumulus is selling more than 250 sites across 32 states at an attractive multiple of 14.25-times cash flow in a deal expected to substantially close in fourth quarter 2020. Read more

    Radio revenue at Spanish language broadcaster Univision decreased 54% to $28.6 million Communications for the second quarter of 2020, compared to $61.7 million for the same prior period. The company cited advertising losses and financial strains brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic for the unprecedented decrease in radio revenue. Read more

    iHeartMedia has promoted Paul Miraldi to Executive VP, Digital Content Strategy. In this expanded role, Miraldi will relocate to Nashville to oversee the company’s new Digital Content Hub. He will continue to lead the National Editorial/Social/Photo Team. Miraldi, who has a long history with the company, has been Senior VP Digital Content Strategy for iHeartMedia since April 2018. Read more

    Podcasting may still be an industry where an individual with a great idea can launch a show into great success. But podcasting has grown during the past few years into an industry where deal-making is measured in the tens and hundreds of millions of dollars. No surprise then that this year’s movers, shakers, visionaries and innovators hail from some of the biggest media and tech companies in America. Podcast News Daily and Inside Radio have compiled a list of the Top 10 Most Powerful People in Podcasting. Read more

    Cumulus Media today (Aug. 10) joined the growing list of radio companies to provide the nitty gritty of their COVID-inflicted second quarter financial results. Revenue fell 47.8% to $146.0 million from $279.7 million in the same period one year ago. On Friday, Cumulus signed a deal to sell its entire tower portfolio for $213 million, the company said Monday, which it plans to use to bolster its bottom line and to continue paying down debt. Read more

    iHeartMedia launches “Why I’m Voting,” a campaign designed to encourage Americans to share their reasons for voting in local, state and national elections this November. The campaign debuted Monday, Aug. 10 and will run through Election Day, Nov. 3 and is carried across the company’s 850 broadcast radio stations in 160 markets, social media platforms and on the iHeartRadio streaming app. Read more

    KYW Philadelphia phases out teletype ticker sound effects under newscasts… WKBE Albany flips to “Big Country 107.1.” … ABC Audio offers up country, rock and news specials for Labor Day weekend… L.A’s ‘The Wave’ KTWV to hold the fifth installment of its “Justice Now – Communities 2 Unity” series… Aerosmith’s Brad Whitford interviewed in “Steve Gorman Rocks.” Read more

    Townsquare Media reported today (Aug. 10) that its revenue declined 34.5% to $74.1 million during the COVID-ravaged second quarter, compared to $113.1 million in the year-ago period. The company’s digital performance – over 48% of its revenue is now derived from digital – coupled with a small to mid-sized market focus helped soften the pandemic blow when compared to its peers, many of which have reported appreciably higher declines. Read more

    Entercom President and CEO David Field told analysts on Friday the company plans to “significantly” reduce the size of its office and studio facilities in the future, after learning during the pandemic that it “can operate at a highly effective level with modified work practices and reduced workspaces.” This will help the company save some of the roughly $70 million it spent on office rent and occupancy costs in 2019. Read more

    People Moves

    Joe "JDub" Dobbins exited his Content Director post at Alpha Media CHR WDJX Louisville (99.7). Dobbins, who also hosted afternoons, was originally furloughed and then was part of the permanent cuts at the company as a result of financial woes in the industry as a result of the pandemic.  Read more

    J. Douglas Williams, who for 40 years served as President/CEO of Omni Communications country “K101” KWOX Woodward, OK, passed away on Friday, Aug. 7, his family reports, He was 78. Read more

    Cumulus Media names Tommy BoDean as Operations Manager of its four radio stations in Melbourne, FL, and Program Director for Top 40 station WAOA-FM and Country station WHKR-FM. BoDean was previously SVP, Programming, iHeartMedia-Jacksonville, FL, and Program Director of Cumulus Nashville Top 40 station WNFN-FM.  Read more

    Jonathan Shaffer is elevated to APD at Cumulus Media sports “104.5 The Zone” WGFX Nashville. Shaffer will continue in his role as Producer of “The Wake Up Zone” morning show. Read more