Dispatch Ask Seeks Consolidation Of TV Licensees

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A Columbus, Ohio-based media company operated by the Wolfe family since 1929 has asked the FCC to shuffle ownership of its three TV properties from three individual licensees.


Dispatch Broadcast Group is the entity that controls NBC affiliate WTHR-13 in Indianapolis and CBS affiliate WBNS-10 in Columbus, Ohio. It is the TV arm of a company that until June 2015 owned The Columbus Dispatch daily newspaper.

Today, Dispatch also owns WBNS-AM & FM in Columbus, and controls WALV-CD 46 in Indianapolis.

VideoIndiana Inc. is the licensee for WTHR-13, WBNS-TV Inc. is the licensee for WBNS-10, and VideOhio Inc. is the licensee for WALV-46.

The licensees are directly owned by “The Dispatch Printing Company Voting Trust,” helmed by trustees Michael J. Fiorile, Bradley L. Campbell, Sara W. Perrini, Ann I. Wolfe and Katherine I. Wolfe.

Through a reorganization plan, The Dispatch Printing Company would spin off WBNS-TV Inc. and VideoIndiana so that 99.8% of each entity’s issued and outstanding voting stock would be held directly by the Voting Trust; VideOhio would become a wholly owned subsidiary of VideoIndiana.

Ultimate control of each Dispatch Licensee would remain the same before and after consummation of the transaction. However, a FCC Form 316 application is necessary because it is a pro forma corporate reorganization — a good learning lesson for companies seeking to make a similar move.

There is no consideration involved in the transaction, nor is there an asset purchase agreement.