Gray signs with CBS in three DMAs


CBSA pact that will bring the CBS Television Network into three small markets currently unserved by the Eye Network sheds light on the reason for some of Gray Television’s earlier 2012 dealings.

The three stations that will carry CBS programming over air, cable and satellite are WECP in Panama City FL, WSVF in Harrisonburg VA and WIYE in Parkersburg WV.

What the lack of call-letter suffixes keep on the QT is the fact that all three of these are low power outlets, and all three were acquired by Gray earlier this year.

Bob Prather, President, COO and Director, Gray Television, Inc., said: “We welcome this exciting opportunity to expand our long-standing successful partnership with CBS with these new affiliation agreements in Panama City, Harrisonburg and Parkersburg. As the owner of more CBS affiliates than any other group operator we highly value the quality entertainment, news and sports programming the Network provides to our viewers and advertisers.”

Diana Wilkin, President, CBS Affiliate Relations, said: “This is a unique opportunity to sign three new affiliations at the same time with one group operator, which speaks to Gray Television’s impressive leadership as a station operator with a 24/7 commitment to the communities they serve. It’s a natural combination of our many strengths. We are pleased and proud to once again establish a home base for CBS in each of these markets.”

Each market is anchored by a full power station using multicasting to carry a selection of broadcast networks. Here’s how it will go down in each of the three Nielsen DMAs.

In Panama City, Gray’s flagship is WJHG, which carries NBC, CW and MNTV. Earlier, Gray acquired the CP for W18DR-D for $36K, and it is the station now known as WECP-CA, home of CBS Network in Panama City.

In Harrisonburg, the Gray flagship is WHSV, which carries Fox, ABC and MNTV. The new CBS outlet known as WSVF-CA was acquired as WAZM-CA for $66K. It has also changed its city of license to Harrisonburg from Staunton-Waynesboro.

In Parkersburg, WTAP is the main outlet for Gray, and it carries NBC, Fox and MNTV. Earlier, Gray bought two LPTVs in Marietta OH for $66K, and one of them, WWVX-LP, is now WIYE-LP and has been relicensed to Parkersburg.