The date has now been set for Cumulus Media shareholders to vote on matters necessary to clear the first of two major transactions. The vote coming July 29 will increase the number of shares available to close the roll-up of Cumulus Media Partners and OK the deal. The preliminary proxy, without the date, was filed earlier this month.
In addition to clearing the way for that $740 million deal, the shareholders will vote on whether to re-elect CEO Lew Dickey to the board of directors, along with Ralph B. Everett, Eric P. Robison and David M. Tolley. Shareholders are also being asked to ratify PricewaterhouseCoopers as the company’s independent auditor and to “transact such other business as may properly come before the annual meeting.” (That’s always added by the lawyers just to cover the bases.)
Yet another vote will be scheduled later to increase the number of authorized shares by a lot more to clear the way for the $2.4 billion acquisition of Citadel Broadcasting.
RBR-TVBR observation: After July 29th Cumulus will be one step closer in becoming the second largest radio group in the USA. All indications point to a closing around Labor Day which is less than 70-days away.
Being number two in size does not mean Cumulus can not become number one (#1) if they develop a key digital strategy for the next 10 years.
RBR-TVBR asked the digital question to CEO Lew Dickey comparing Cumulus to Clear Channel the answer in part, “…They (Clear Channel) clearly have scale. They’re making digital investments and that is absolutely what needs to be done to remain competitive and evolve the business model. …We have not to date been in a position to do that…”
There will be a lot of moving parts to this new mega radio group that will need to address the digital side of today’s business world – way too many to outline.
RBR-TVBR has learned through our own experience that analog minds have a very difficult time developing and executing a digital strategy.
Cumulus will need to find a few keen minds that understand digital but also have a passion for radio to build a workable growing digital division.
One word of advice: Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. RBR-TVBR’s second word of advice later.