SBS A Side Player In Chicago Translator Deal


Editor’s Note: This article was updated at 6 p.m. Eastern on Nov. 21 to correct information regarding Spectrum Development Group, buyer of translator W244BQ in the Chicago suburb of Park Ridge, Ill. While there is a Spectrum Development Group that describes itself as “a turnkey development manager of hotels, conference centers and resorts,” an entity with the same name specifically involved in translators and FM facilities is the party acquiring the translator. Additionally, the translator will not be used by SBS, which has agreed in principle to lease out the HD2 signal of its lone FM in the market to Spectrum. A follow-up story will appear Nov. 22 at

According to an asset purchase agreement filed on Friday (11/18) with the FCC, religious noncomm Educational Media Foundation is selling an FM translator with excellent coverage of Chicago’s North Side and western neighborhoods to a local entity named Spectrum Development Group, with the radio acquisition being led by Manager Richard Bonick.

But what’s Spectrum role with the translator?

Spectrum Development Group is a company specifically involved in translators and FM facilities that has a verbal agreement with SBS to lease the HD2 signal tied to its lone FM serving the Windy City.

Spectrum is acquiring W244BQ, a 90-watt directional FM translator assigned to 96.7 MHz and licensed to Park Ridge, Ill.

The signal at present covers an affluent area that’s the hub of the Cubs, and neighborhoods out to O’Hare International Airport.

Spectrum is purchasing the translator for $350,000, and has agreed to a 10% escrow deposit. However, this is contingent on the FCC approving the use of the John Hancock Tower as a transmitter site.

While the asset purchase agreement does not mention SBS, the filing indicates that W244BQ will be used to retransmit the forthcoming HD2 programming set to air on regional Mexican WLEY-FM 107.9 in Aurora, Ill.

The FCC filing tied to the asset purchase agreement did not note that WLEY’s multicast channel would be used by Spectrum.

Broadcast Properties LLC served as the broker representing EMF in this transaction.