KAMLOOPS, BC, May 16, 2013 /CNW/ - Bell Media, Astral Media Inc.
(Astral) and the Jim Pattison Broadcast Group Limited Partnership
(Pattison) today jointly announced Pattison's acquisition of three key
FM radio stations located in Calgary and Winnipeg.
Subject to regulatory approvals, Pattison will purchase the following
two Bell Media stations and one Astral station:
KooL FM 101.5 (CKCE-FM) - hot adult contemporary format in Calgary
FAB 94.3 (CHIQ-FM) - classic pop format in Winnipeg
QX 104 (CFQX-FM) - country format in Winnipeg
Rick Arnish, Chairman of Jim Pattison Broadcast Group stated, "This is a
very important acquisition for our Broadcast Group and, with the
approval of this transaction from the CRTC, we will expand our presence
in the major markets of Calgary and Winnipeg, which we have been
focusing on for some time."
Mr. Arnish went on to say, "With the pending launch of our newest
station CHPK-FM (95.3 The Peak) in Calgary, combining forces with KooL
FM (Today & Back in the Day) and its great team will allow our Group to
have a very strong competitive FM radio combo in Alberta's
fastest-growing city. We're also very excited about the opportunity to
expand in western Canada and specifically into the Winnipeg radio
market with two separate stations, QX 104 (Today's Country) and FAB
94.3 (Super Hits of the 60s & 70s). We are really looking forward to
working with and learning from the superb teams at these separate
Winnipeg operations as we expand into a new marketplace for our Group."
Rod Schween, President of Pattison Broadcasting said "We're just
delighted that we are being given this opportunity to expand our radio
reach in western Canada, and the addition of these three exciting
stations will definitely strengthen our Group and our resources in
B.C., Alberta, and now in Manitoba. We look forward to building on the
legacies created by both Bell Media and Astral. Our history has been
built on acquisitions and new licences, as we are great believers in
the future of radio, and this purchase is part of our strategic plan to
grow and expand in the west."
Pattison's acquisition of these radio stations is a result of the
proposed transaction to unite Astral and Bell Media. Astral and Bell
are divesting certain radio stations to comply with the Canadian
Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission's (CRTC) Common
Ownership Policy, which limits the number of stations a company can own
in a single market.
The Pattison transaction is subject to approval from the CRTC, for which
an application will be submitted shortly, and contingent on CRTC
approval of the Astral-Bell Media transaction.
"While a necessary outcome of our plan to join with Astral, the decision
to sell these stations wasn't easy," said Chris Gordon, President,
Radio and Local TV, Bell Media. "Each is a strong performer in its
respective market, and they will undoubtedly strengthen Pattison's
growing portfolio of media assets."
"Parting with a valued station is difficult, but we trust that the QX
104 team and the Pattison Group will both benefit from this acquisition
and help make the Canadian radio industry more vibrant than ever," said
Ian Lurie, Chief Operating Officer, Astral Radio.
Founded in 1961, Astral Media Inc. (TSX: ACM.A/ACM.B) is one of Canada's
largest media companies. It operates several media properties - pay and
specialty television, radio, out-of-home advertising, and digital -
that are among the most popular in the country. Astral plays a central
role in community life across the country by offering diverse, rich,
and vibrant programming that meets the tastes and needs of consumers
and advertisers alike. To learn more about Astral, please visit www.Astral.com.
About Bell Media
Bell Media is Canada's premier multimedia company with leading assets in
television, radio and digital. With passion and an unrelenting
commitment to excellence, Bell Media entertains, informs and inspires
Canadians. Bell Media owns 28 conventional stations, including CTV,
Canada's #1 television network, and owns and operates 30 specialty
channels, including TSN, Canada's #1 specialty channel and RDS,
Canada's #1 French-language specialty channel. Bell Media also owns 33
radio stations, dozens of websites, Dome Productions Inc. and has
partnered with Cirque du Soleil to form Cirque du Soleil Media, a
Montréal-based production company. Bell Media is owned by BCE Inc.
(TSX, NYSE: BCE), Canada's largest communications company. For more on
Bell Media, please visit www.BellMedia.ca.
About Jim Pattison Broadcast Group
The Jim Pattison Broadcast Group, with its headquarters in Kamloops,
B.C. is the industry's largest private, western-based broadcast group,
currently operating 30 FM radio stations, as well as three conventional
television stations, in British Columbia and Alberta. Pattison
Broadcasting is a proud division of the Jim Pattison Group, a
diversified group of operating businesses, based in Vancouver, which
has grown to become the second largest privately-held company in
Canada. Please visit www.JimPattison.com and www.JPBroadcast.com for more information.
SOURCE: Jim Pattison Broadcast Group
For further information:
Jim Pattison Broadcast Group
Astral Media Inc.