Byron Allen to purchase seven TV stations for $380 million

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Los Angeles media mogul Byron Allen is increasing his broadcast TV empire with a $380 million money buy of seven stations, together with retailers in Tucson and Madison, Wis.

Atlanta-based Grey Tv Inc., struck a take care of Allen’s firm as a result of Grey should divest a handful of TV stations at the moment owned by Quincy Media Inc., to win federal approval for its $925-million takeover of a separate tv firm, Quincy Media.

The divestitures have been required as a result of Grey Tv already operates a TV station in these seven markets.

The deal additionally consists of stations that Quincy at the moment owns in Cedar Rapids, Iowa; Paducah, Ky.-Harrisburg, Sick.; La Cross-Eau Claire, Wis.; Wausau-Rhinelander, Wis.; and Rockford, Sick..

“We’re thrilled to facilitate the switch of those effective Quincy tv stations to Byron Allen and Allen Media Group, who we’re assured will proceed the robust commitments to journalism and localism which have distinguished these stations underneath Quincy’s excellent stewardship,” Grey TV’s Government Chairman and Chief Government Hilton H. Howell mentioned in an announcement.

Allen Media Group, which was based by Allen in 1993, additionally owns a dozen tv channels, together with the Climate Channel, a free streaming service referred to as Native Now and native tv stations. Amongst its portfolio are 16 tv stations affiliated with the most important networks, ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox. He owns a community affiliate in California that serves Chico and Redding. He additionally has a station in Eugene, Ore., and one in Honolulu.

“Over the previous year-and-a-half, we’ve invested near $1 billion to amass best-in-class, top-tier, broadcast community associates,” Allen mentioned in an announcement. “We plan to take a position roughly 10 billion {dollars} to amass extra ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX tv stations over the subsequent two years with the aim of being the most important broadcast tv group in America.”

The station transaction is anticipated to be full within the third quarter of this yr.

Earlier this month, Allen launched Native Now, a streaming app that gives native information, climate, sports activities, site visitors, films and TV reveals. The service is offered by Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fireplace TV, Android TV and Comcast’s Xfinity, amongst different suppliers. Expertise will allow the corporate to focus on programming, together with ads, to customers based mostly on their ZIP Codes.

“All of our media property, together with these broadcast tv stations, will work in live performance to amplify our free-streaming service, Native Now,” Allen mentioned.

The Los Angeles entrepreneur has been steadily increasing his empire. He additionally introduced a high-profile authorized case towards two of the nation’s largest pay-TV distributors, Comcast and Constitution Communications, alleging that racism was the explanation his channels weren’t carried on these companies.

Allen, who’s Black, filed the $20-billion lawsuit in 2015. The case in the end reached the U.S. Supreme Courtroom and was legally important as a result of it relied on the historic Civil Rights Act of 1866, which was enacted a yr after the Civil Warfare ended and mandated that Black residents “shall have the identical proper … to make and implement contracts … as is loved by white residents.”

However the Supreme Courtroom struck down a lot of Allen’s arguments. In a 9-0 determination in March 2020, the excessive courtroom mentioned it was not sufficient for a civil rights plaintiff to claim that his race was one in all a number of components that motivated an organization to refuse to do enterprise with him. As an alternative, the particular person should present race was the essential and deciding issue.

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