ABC Television spinning a pair of TVs to former owner


As far as Walt Disney’s ABC Television group is concerned, the meaning of O&O is changing from owned-and-operated to over-and-out when it comes to station in its two smallest markets. Buyer SJL Broadcasting sold them both to ABC 15 years ago.

The stations are WJRT-TV in the Flint-Saginaw-Bay City MI DMA and WTVG-TV in the Toledo OH DMA.

SJL, headed by George Lilly, currently operates stations in two markets through various licensee companies. In Erie PA, it has NBC WICU-TV, and also operates CBS WSEE-TV via a shared services agreement. In Elmira NY, it has a single-station triple-play thanks to the magic of digital technology, carrying ABC on WENY-TV and offering both CBS and CW programming on side channels.

ABC will have O&Os in eight markets once this deal closes: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Houston, Raleigh-Durham-Fayetteville NC and Fresno CA.

Terms of the deal were not released. Both stations are expected to retain their ABC affiliation.