ION Media is acquiring full power UHF stations in St. Louis, Boise and Columbia, SC. All three stations are currently ION affiliates. WRBU in St. Louis and WZRB in Columbia are currently operated by ION with Gary Chapman, former CEO of LIN TV, listed as trustee.
KTRV in Boise is owned by Block Communications and switched from a My Network TV affiliate to ION last fall. Until 2011, KTRV had been Boise’s Fox affiliate/.
“Growing our TV station portfolio will give U.S. households access to much-needed affordable independent entertainment, kids and lifestyle programming,” said ION Media CEO Brandon Burgess. “These three important acquisitions will add 5 million viewers to our networks’ audience reach.”
After the deals close, ION will have 63 stations and the only network to operate TV stations in each of the 20 largest U.S. markets and 24 of the top 25. These acquisitions also make ION the largest U.S. holder of full power UHF broadcast TV spectrum.