An Immaculate Merger Nears Finalization


A pair of noncommercial religious broadcasters have formally commenced a merger originally announced in mid-October 2016, by way of a Form 314 filed with the FCC on Jan. 19 and made public on Tuesday (1/24).

The deal sees IHR Educational Broadcasting’s Immaculate Heart Radio folded into Starboard Media Foundation’s Relevant Radio.

The board of directors of each entity have deemed the merger in their respective best interests.

Terms of the merger were not disclosed. However, language stated in the Conditions of Closing notes that “the parties shall have raised a minimum of $30 million pursuant to their joint capital campaign.”

Based on Tuesday’s FCC filing, it seems that this minimum amount is to be met.

relevantradoThe surviving corporation will conduct business under the Relevant Radio name. Radio station identification will remain the same for current Relevant Radio stations. For IHR radio stations, identification will state: “You are listening to Relevant Radio on the Immaculate Heart Media Network” for at least the first 12 months after closing.

Other branding changes “will be prudently assessed in light of past operating experiences.”

Relevant Radio is comprised of 20 owned-and-operated radio stations across the U.S. and has been in operation since December 2000. It is based in Green Bay, Wisc., and has nearly 40 affiliates.

Immaculate Heart Radio owns 22 stations and 17 translators. Among its properties are KHJ-AM 930 in Los Angeles; KSFB-AM 1260 in San Francisco; KYAA-AM 1200 in Soquel, Calif., serving the Monterey-Salinas market; KMPH-AM 840 in Modesto, Calif.; and KCIK-AM 740 in Kihei, Maui, Hawaii.

The famous KHJ was sold to Immaculate Heart Radio by Liberman Broadcasting in August 2014, for $9.75 million. From April 1965 until November 1980, KHJ aired a Top 40 format and was one of the nation’s most influential radio stations through the early 1970s.