Rich expands in Idaho Falls-Pocatello


A cratered deal for a trio of station owned by Pacific Empire Radio Corporation has opened the door to Rich Broadcasting to create an expanded Idaho radio cluster in a deal that might not pass regulatory muster if the cluster was located in an Arbitron-rated market.

Rich, headed by former Bonneville exec Richard Meachum, is buying KGTM-FM and KRXK-AM Rexburg ID and KBJX-FM Shelley ID from PERC, headed by John I. Taylor. The price will be $1.1M, comprised of a $55K escrow deposit, an additional $245K cash at closing and an $800K note.

Rich is replacing Chaparral Broadcasting, which inked a contract 7/1/10 to acquire the trio at a price tag $400K higher. The Chaparral deal called for $10K in escrow, $40K cash at closing and a $1.45M note.

The Rich deal called for an LMA to kick in 9/16/11 with a nominal monthly rent of $1.

Rich already has two AMs and four FMs in the Idaho Falls-Pocatello market – but since it is not an Arbitron-rated market, the old-fashioned contour overlap market cap rules apply.

We note that the Eastlan ratings service lists each town as separate market, and also provides combined ratings as a two-pronged single market.

RBR-TVBR observation: Rich has three stations that put a primary contour over both towns – KID-AM, KID-FM, both Idaho Falls, and KPKY-FM Pocatello. Its other stations, KLLP-FM Chubbock and KWIK-AM & KEGE-FM Pocatello are all Pocatello-oriented. The stations coming from Pacific Empire serve the Idaho Falls side of the market.

If the local ownership study plays out as we expect, it will show something along the lines of a pair of two-AM four-FM clusters being formed by the nine stations, more or less.

We note that it is not at all uncommon for contour studies to produce a multitude of contour-overlap “markets” beyond the two basic clusters we believe are the motivation for this particular deal in the first place.

The FCC filing for the latest deal said that a local cap study will be filed soon as an amendment to the application.