Emmis Plans $80 Million Sale of Power 106 FM, Hip-Hop Staple in Los Angeles
Emmis Communications has agreed to sell leading hip-hop station Power 106 in Los Angeles to the media arm of Meruelo Group, a holding company based in California. The price tag: $82.75 million, pending FCC and other approvals by regulators.
Emmis purchased Power 106, or KPWR-FM, from Century Broadcasting in 1984. The station, with its slogan "Where Hip-Hop Lives," is based in Burbank. On-air personalities include J Cruz, Yesi Ortiz, DJ Felli Fel, Justin Credible and DJ Precise, among others. Indiana-based Emmis owns 19 radio stations -- 16 FM and three AM -- in markets including New York, L.A. and St. Louis.
"Power 106 has been part of the Emmis family for more than 32 years, so this day is bittersweet, but I am confident that the station and our team are in good hands," said Jeff Smulyan, chairman and CEO of Emmis Communications. "The Meruelo Group will be great owners of this historic brand, and take it to even greater heights."
The Meruelo Group, led by chairman and CEO Alex Meruelo, has opted to go into expansion mode following its participation earlier this year in the FCC TV spectrum auction. Earlier in this decade, the group acquired Los Angeles TV station KWHY-22 and radio station KDAY-FM, and is considered the largest minority-owned media group in the state of California.
"The acquisition of Power 106 is a game changer for our group and our media division," stated Meruelo. "As a fan and someone who has had a business relationship with this station for more than 30 years, I understand the importance of Power 106 to this community. We are committed to bringing the resources, talent and passion necessary to make this legendary brand the #1 radio station in Los Angeles."