Nine television stations operated by Nexstar Media Group won’t be participating in any “great affiliate swaps” forcing local TV viewers to find a new channel to watch such programs as “The Price is Right” or “NCIS.”
The nation’s larges broadcast TV company has inked a multi-year agreement to renew CBS network affiliations for eight of its O&Os and for WYOU-22 in Wilkes Barre-Scranton, Pa. — the very first station Nexstar acquired, in 1996, now owned by Mission Broadcasting and operated by Nexstar through a Shared Services Agreement.
The O&Os keeping CBS affiliation are:
- WNCN-TV in Raleigh-Durham
- KLAS-8 in Las Vegas
- KGPE-TV in Fresno-Visalia, Calif.
- KVEO-TV in McAllen-Brownsville-Harlingen, Tex.
- WTAJ-TV in Johnston-Altoona, Pa.
- KXMC-TV in Minot-Bismarck-Dickinson, N.D.
- WVNS-TV in Bluefield-Beckley, W. Va.
- KREX-TV in Grand Junction, Colo.
It’s an early renewal for Nexstar and ViacomCBS: the nine affiliations were set to expire later this year.
And, it comes after the signing in August 2019 of a different affiliation agreement between ViacomCBS and Nexstar covering 19 Nexstar stations in 15 markets.
The agreement announced Tuesday (3/24), coupled with the August agreement and other prior renewals, marks the long-term extension of substantially all of the ViacomCBS affiliation agreements covering 49 Nexstar television stations.
It’s a good thing for ViacomCBS: Nexstar is the largest independent operator of CBS affiliates, covering 14% of the U.S. and serving more than 15 million households in 41 DMAs.
The agreement also allows Nexstar’s CBS affiliates to become locally available to subscribers on CBS All Access, CBS’s digital subscription video on-demand and live streaming service — a point of contention with some broadcast TV groups who have wrangled over retransmission consent fees.
“We’re pleased to reach an early agreement with Nexstar that builds upon our longtime partnership and enables us to continue serving millions of households across the country,” said Ray Hopkins, President of U.S. Networks Distribution at ViacomCBS. “Together with Nexstar, we look forward to continue playing an important role in providing local communities with the trusted news and entertainment that audiences can rely on during these uncertain times.”
Nexstar founder and President/CEO Perry Sook added, “Together, CBS and Nexstar deliver great entertainment and information to viewers and an excellent marketing platform for local and national advertisers. The agreement also provides further visibility to Nexstar’s distribution revenue growth following the completion of new multi-year retransmission consent agreements in the second half of 2019 representing approximately 70% of our subscribers.”