Atlanta-based Cumulus Broadcasting is selling 12 radio stations in Augusta, Bangor and Presque Isle to Townsquare Media of Greenwich, Conn. According to a press release from Townsquare, the company will acquire 55 Cumulus stations in 11 markets in exchange for 10 of its stations in two markets and $116 million in cash.
WLBZ-2 reports that Townsquare will acquire four stations in Augusta, five stations in Bangor and three in Presque Isle (for a list of the stations, see below). Cumulus will retain a handful of its Portland stations, and acquire 10 stations in Illinois. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of the year, pending regulatory approval. Following its completion and that of another deal in Texas, Townsquare will own 244 stations in 51 small and mid-sized markets. CEO Steven Price said the move is part of its "continued investment in the local media business in small and mid-sized markets."
The deal appears to sell off stations Cumulus acquired just last year when it bought Citadel Broadcasting Corp. for $1.7 billion and its stations in Augusta, Portland and Presque Isle. Cumulus will retain Portland stations WBLM-FM 102.9, WCYY-FM 94.3, WHOM-FM 94.9 and WJBQ-FM 97.9.
It's the latest news in changing ownership for Maine radio stations. Nassau Broadcasting declared bankruptcy last year and a handful of its Maine stations from York County to the Down East region are headed for auction on May 8, according to the Bangor Daily News.