Brokers hanging tough in tough transaction market


The National Association of Media Brokers is reporting stable membership year-over-year, which is no mean feat in a business that the financiers of the world have rendered dry as a bone for the past few years. And NAMB reports signs that the trading market is beginning to show signs of life.

“We are happy to report that our membership is virtually unchanged,” said Media Services Group’s Jody McCoy, who also serves as NAMB’s President. “Last year our members were 75 professionals in 33 brokerage firms,” said McCoy. “This year we are 72 professionals in 33 brokerage firms. That tells us our membership is committed for the long term and expects better times ahead.”

According to McCoy, even if the flow of actual deals is not markedly improving, the phones are heating up in both the radio and television spheres. And more importantly, the gap between what sellers are asking for and what buyers are willing to pay seems to be closing.

Financing remains a problem, but even on that front there is a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel. NAMB treasurer Glenn Serafin of Serafin Bros. explained, “No media lending units inside money center banks or finance companies have been reconstituted.” But he added, “Most of the capital flowing back into terrestrial broadcasting is at the private equity end of the capital pipeline, which always is the most opportunistic of the capital sources. So that is a good sign.”