Sovereign Snag Brings Growth To Shockley, Bernier


Two FM radio stations and one AM stations serving the Iron Mountain, Mich., area and three FMs and two AMs serving Marquette, Mich., are being sold in a transaction that has yet to be posted with the FCC.

The buyer is a group that has established itself as a formidable small-market operator with stations in Michigan and Wisconsin.

For an undisclosed price, AMC Partners — an Armada Media-related entity led by Terry Shockley and Chris Bernier — is purchasing the the following eight properties from Sovereign Communications:

  • Class C1 WIMK-FM 93.1 in Iron Mountain, Mich.
  • Class C3 WZNL-FM 94.3 in Norway, Mich.
  • WMIQ-AM 1450 kHz in Iron Mountain, with 1kw
  • Class C1 WJPD-FM 92.3 in Ishpeming, Mich.
  • Class A WUPK-FM 94.1 in Marquette
  • Class A WNGE-FM 99.5 in Negaunee
  • Class D WDMJ-AM 1320 in Marquette, with 1 tower
  • Class C 1kw WIAN-AM 1240 in Ishpeming

Sovereign is led by Bill Gleich. It also owns radio stations in the Newberry and Sault Sainte Marie regions of Northern Michigan.

Kalil & Co. served as the exclusive broker in this deal.

The Escanaba deal will help AMC build out a sizable cluster in the market. In late December 2014, it agreed to acquire from Lakes Radio WCHT-AM & WGLQ-FM in Escanaba, WGKL-FM in Gladstone and WTIQ-AM & WCMM-FM in Manistique, Mich., for $1.8 million.

Now, AMC will have five FMs and three AMs in the Escanaba-Iron Mountain area.

For Sovereign, it’s an exit from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula that’s nearly a decade in the making. In March 2010, it acquired the Escanaba and Marquette stations from David Simmons’ Northern Star Broadcasting in a $3,425,000 deal negotiated by Patrick Communications.