Entercom buys four radio stations; refinances $520M in debt

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The transaction will be led by Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, Inc., RBC Capital Markets, LLC and Wells Fargo Securities, LLC as joint lead arrangers and bookrunners.

The two news items – both announced Tuesday morning – do not appear to be directly connected. Entercom said it plans to use the proceeds from the debt offering to refinance its existing $225 million in senior secured bank debt; call its $220 million in 10.5 percent senior subordinated notes; and pay transaction fees and expenses.

As part of the Charlotte, North Carolina station deal, Entercom will acquire The Fan (WFNZ-AM), The Link (WLNK-FM) and news/talk leader WBT AM/FM — all of which are currently owned by Greater Media and held in trust pending the completion of Beasley’s acquisition. Entercom will also acquire Beasley’s WFNZ-AM in Charlotte and an FM translator. The transaction is set to close late in the fourth quarter or early first quarter.

The acquisition provides Entercom with a new position in the Charlotte market while strengthening its existing Carolina presence alongside its Greensboro, North Carolina and Greenville, South Carolina clusters. The new station cluster is the radio broadcast home of the Carolina Panthers and the Charlotte Hornets.

“We had conversations with Beasley and we were looking for ways to create value,” Entercom CEO David Field said in an interview Tuesday. “We pushed for the sports station to be included, which was something Beasley wasn’t required to do for regulatory reasons.”

Full article here.

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