Radio One is getting the financial pieces in line as it moves forward with its pending $550 million deal to buy out Comcast’s 47.9% share of the broadcaster’s cable channel TV One. Radio One has gone into the market to refinance $119 million of outstanding debt. CFO Peter Thompson told analysts on a conference call this month the move is just the first part, with the debt getting rolled up into Radio One, which will then look to do a larger refinancing of its debt totaling roughly $1 billion.
“We’re hopeful to get a better rate,” CEO Alfred Liggins said, pointing out the company will head into the debt market with TV One as an elixir for any lender worries. “We believe that this substantially improves the credit of the company and the collateral package,” he said.
As Radio One becomes more of a multimedia company, it estimates half of revenue will come from radio, and the other half will be split between TV One and digital. Liggins said it’s an evolution he promised not only to shareholders, but also to advertisers.
“In the continuingly browning America, multicultural advertising continues to rate strong and move forward and I think that we’re right at the epicenter of it,” he said. “We’ve got some more exciting announcements and initiatives in the coming months as it relates to really firming up and filling out this platform.”