Hazleton AM on the fast trading track


Panorama PA Inc. signed a contract dated 8/12/09 to buy WAZL-AM in Hazleton PA, a community south of Wilkes-Barre. But it already has a deal to sell the station. And for once, the value of the station bucked the trend – it actually went up.

Panorama, headed by Alexander Sloot, bought the station for $105K from Ira Rosenblatt’s WS2K Radio for $105K. It’ll pick up an extra $10K via its deal to sell it to WAZL Partners for $115K. Glenn Summers and Ron Miller are among the investors behind WAZL Partners.

The station is a Class C on 1490 kHz, with 1 kW-U of a non-directional antenna. It is a local Hazleton signal – its secondary signal gets to about half of Wilkes-Barre, and its fringe signal gets to about half of Scranton.

The soon-to-be new owners, who had the right to kick off an LMA of the station as of 4/1/11, are reconstructing the station’s website and left the following message on what little website is available for interested locals: “Welcome to the NEW website for Hazleton’s Hometown Station! WAZL Partners LLP recently entered into agreement to purchase WAZL 1490 AM radio, and we do have some changes in store for our community radio station. You’ll now find the best music from the 60’s, 70’s, 80’s and the roots of Rock & Roll, plus the local programming and community sports you love!”

The paperwork for the deal is unusually long on protection against force majeur type catastrophes. The contract for the LMA requires that the buyers/brokers carry $1M in liability insurance in the event of causing bodily injury to the public, another $1M to cover liability for property damage, and another $100K to cover possible damage to the station. All three policies must list the seller as payee.

And then look at the litany of possible calamities written into the transaction contract itself. In this case, at least, the seller is attesting to the fact that none of these events, which range from mildly troublesome to horrific, have in fact occurred, at least in recent memory.

The clause says the station has not “…suffered any fire, riot, explosion, earthquake, windstorm, strike or other labor trouble, lockout, flood, act of God, or of the public enemy, casualty, condemnation, confiscation, requisition, embargo, activity of the Armed Forces of the United States, revocation of license or right to do business, cancellation or modification of contracts by governmental authority, govemment regulation or order restricting the operation of its business, cancellation or modification of any franchise, right, contract, license, or agreement or any other event which has materially and adversely affected its business, operations, properties, or assets…”