Black Crow Media recently announced that it had reached a settlement with its senior lender, GE Capital, and was set to emerge from Chapter 11. But there were no details of how that was accomplished. It turns out that a veteran broadcaster is the key to the resolution.
Under the settlement agreement filed with the US Bankruptcy Court in Jacksonville, FL, Paul Stone is buying GE Capital’s loan. He also provided debtor-in-possession financing to Black Crow and will become the majority owner when it emerges from Chapter 11.
Stone is paying GE Capital $20 million in two $10 million installments for its Black Crow loans, which have a balance outstanding of a bit over $39 million. Stone will receive a $20 million secured debt interest in the reorganized Black Crow and a $19 million unsecured interest.
For its part, GE Capital had objected to a reorganization plan which Black Crow submitted last year which would have paid the lender only $13 million. So its position was improved substantially in the final settlement.
The reorganized Black Crow will keep the company’s top two officers at headquarters in Daytona Beach, FL, with Mike Linn as COO and James Devis as CFO. Stone will assume the role of CEO.
Black Crow owns and operates 22 radio stations in five markets in Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.
RBR-TVBR observation: No one is a better judge of radio asset value than an experienced operator who’s made a lot of money from previous station ownership. Paul Stone certainly fits that description. Mike Linn fought quite a battle over attempts by his lender to have a receiver take over and sell off Black Crow’s stations. He’ll still have a company to run, but with a new boss in place above him.
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