A broadcaster with deep Indiana roots is forming a new group via the acquisition of a six-station collection of Indiana radio outlets in a deal brokered by Kalil & Co. The buyer, Jerry “J” Chapman, was stints with Emmis and Maverick on his resume.
The seller is Barry Drake’s Backyard Broadcasting. It marks the second recent sale for the company, following the divestiture of stations in two upstate New York markets to Community Broadcasters.
The stations in the current deal include:
* WLBC (FM 104.1), Muncie IN
* WERK (FM 104.9), Muncie IN
* WXFN (AM 1340), Muncie IN
* WHBU (AM 1240), Anderson IN
* WMXQ (FM 93.5), Hartford City IN
* WMQX (FM 96.7), Alexandria. IN
“I’m very excited to come home and put my years of experience in the vibrant radio industry to good use back in Indiana. The stations we’re acquiring are vital links between listeners and the local community. We intend to utilize those radio resources to help grow our customer’s businesses and to improve the quality of entertainment and information in our new communities,” Chapman said. “Best of all, the management of this group of stations will be local to serve local needs. We want to make a great thing even better, and Woof Boom Radio intends to start off on the right foot.”
Joining Chapman on the buyers’ side of the table are Ray Kennedy of Conormara Investments; Jason Farmer, Managing Director of WestBridge Investments; and Aaron Reitz.
Emmis’ Jeff Smulyan expressed good wishes for his former employee, saying, “J Chapman will be a breath of fresh air for employees, advertisers, and listeners at the stations that will soon be part of the Woof Boom family. While J’s leadership of our Fantasy Football team — the Smulyan Bay Buccaneers — left much to be desired, he is an astute and compassionate leader who is committed to local radio that makes a difference. I am delighted that J is coming back to Indiana.”
Another former employer, Gary Rozynek of Maverick, also weighed in, saying, “I am thrilled that J has elected to pursue station ownership in Indiana. Having worked with him for the last eight years, he has demonstrated strong leadership and the ability to create value running our Rockford, Illinois assets. He is a values-driven and principle-centered manager who gets his employees to embrace the mission. J has a long history of success in broadcasting and I am confident that as his company begins owning and operating this family of radio stations, they will serve the community well and be their customers’ best marketing partner.”