Magic Valley Media inks a deal to pick up four full-power stations and a translator for $475,000 in a deal with Rich Broadcasting, which has been in bankruptcy since late 2016. The sale amounts to a restructuring since Magic Valley Media is a partnership among Richard Mecham, who’ll hold a 55% stake in the new company, and his partners Stephen Hawes, Trevor Larsen and Stephen Mecham, each of whom will hold a 15% stake. All four men had also been equity holders in Rich Broadcasting.
In a deal submitted to the FCC, Magic Valley Media seeks to acquire AC “Star 107.5” KYZK, classic rock KECH-FM (95.3), adult alternative KSKI-FM (94.5) in the Twin Falls-Sun Valley market. The deal also includes the Ketchum, ID-licensed translator K276DW at 103.1 FM. Also beyond the market limits, Magic Valley Media picks up news-talk KOUW (102.9) in nearby Island Park, ID. Magic Valley Media will operate the stations under a local marketing agreement until the sale closes.
A group of stations owned by Rich Broadcasting in the Jackson, WY market aren’t included in the sale. That cluster includes “Country 93.5” KJAX, adult alternative “96.9 The Mountain” KMTN, classic rock “KZ-95.3” KZJH and Spanish adult hits “Juan 1340” KSGT. “The Jackson radio stations would remain under the auspices of the bankruptcy court,” the FCC filing says, explaining the sale of the Sun Valley stations to their previous owner. “This in turn will allow the trustee to focus his efforts on selling the remaining radio stations in Jackson to another new buyer who also will best serve the public interest,” it says.
Rich Broadcasting filed for bankruptcy in fall 2016 and has been overseen by trustee Mark Hasimoto since March 2017. The company has been in a dispute with American Tower Corp. (ATC) over unpaid tower lease fees for its Wyoming stations. Rich Broadcasting principal Richard Mecham claimed ATC violated the Forest Service’s communication site plan, which stipulates that fees and rents charged by ATC to its tenants are to be “consistent with, and not in excess of, other fees for similar facilities.” It’s unclear if the dispute is settled with the new purchase agreement between Rich Broadcasting and Magic Valley Media.
This story has been updated to show Magic Valley Media is not buying the Jackson, WY stations.