Trinity turning Tidewater LMA into full ownership


Paul Crouch’s Trinity Church Center of Santa Ana is going from renter to owner in the Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News DMA, striking a $7.5M deal with owner Copeland Channel 21 LLC to acquire WHRE-TV, licensed to Virginia Beach.

The seller is headed by Robert O. Copeland.

According to ownership documents filed with the FCC, Trinity has been programming the station under a time brokerage agreement, using it as an outlet for its Trinity Broadcasting Network.

Trinity will pay $2.5M to Copeland and will pay another $5M to retire Copeland’s promissory note held by Branch Banking & Trust of Virginia.

Copeland actually received FCC approval to construct the relatively young station 6/1/05, benefitting from a 35% bidding credit. The parties note that closing will occur after 6/1/10, getting past the five-year hurdle, thus avoiding the necessity of the buyer refunding the value of the credit to the FCC.

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