Vermont broadcaster spins one to buy two


SoldBruce A. James’ Vermont Broadcast Associates Inc. is selling WQJQ-FM Barton VT, and in another deal, is buying WIKE-AM Newport VT and WMOO-FM Derby Center VT. The spin-off is necessary to keep the company within local ownership caps.

The stations are all in the Montpelier-Barre-St. Johnsbury VT market; in fact, they’re all on the eastern side of the geographically far-flung market, which impacts St. Johnsbury but not the other two communities that comprise the market’s name.

Technically, VBA will have a maxed-out two-AM, four-FM cluster, but physically, it will have two one-AM, two-FM clusters, one serving St. Johnsbury and the other one serving the Newport-Derby Center area to the north.

That’s where WIKE-AM and WMOO-FM are located. They’re coming from Jeffrey D. Shapiro’s Vertical Capital Partners LP for $710K cash. The stations will eventually be joined by WJJZ-FM Irasburg VT, which as of now is a CP.

The other three stations in the overall cluster are WSTJ-AM and WKXH-FM in St. Johnsbury and WGMT-FM Lyndon VT.

Making it all possible is the sale of WQJQ-FM Barton, a 100 Watt Class A that is roughly in between St. Johnsbury and Newport.

It’s going to Michael A. Percy’s Capital Broadcasting Associates for $25K. The contract calls for $1,250 in earnest money and a promissory note for the balance.