LIN Media

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LIN Media, LLC
Type Public
Traded as NYSELIN
Industry Broadcast Television
Television Production
Fate Acquisition by Media General
Predecessors LIN Broadcasting
LIN TV Corporation
New Vision Television
Founded 1994[1]
Headquarters Austin, Texas
Area served United States (Nationwide)
Key people Vincent Sadusky, CEO
Products Broadcast television
Revenue Increase $443.5 million USD
Operating income Increase $247.44 million USD
Net income Decrease $274.5 million USD
Employees 2,414 (full-time)
Parent HM Capital Partners (70%) [2]
Subsidiaries Red McCombs Media
The former LIN TV logo.

LIN Media is an American holding company founded in 1994[1] that operates 43 television stations. All except six are affiliates of the five major U.S. television networks. Five of the six remaining stations are affiliated with the syndication service MyNetworkTV and one is a low powered weather station in Indiana.

LIN Media's Chief Executive Officer is Vincent L. Sadusky. Sadusky had formerly been LIN's Chief Financial Officer as well as Vice President and treasurer since 2004, and previously was CFO for Telemundo, working closely on its sale to GE/NBC. Sadusky had been interim CEO since former Chairman Gary R. Chapman announced his impending retirement in June 2006, and through the company's search for a permanent replacement. He was officially installed as CEO upon Chapman's official retirement on July 10, 2006.[3]


LIN TV's roots trace back to the founding of its former parent, LIN Broadcasting Corporation, in 1961. LIN Broadcasting was engaged in radio, television, direct marketing, information and learning, music publishing, and record labels. LIN takes its initials from three major cities where it originally owned radio stations: Louisville, Indianapolis and Nashville (all located on Interstate 65). The company purchased its first television station, WTVP (now WAND) in Decatur, Illinois, at the end of 1965. It also briefly owned the catalogues of King Records and Starday Records in the early 1970s.

LIN Broadcasting made acquisitions in broadcasting, expanded into paging, and in the early 1980s the company entered the fledgling cellular telephone business. By 1983 the company owned seven television stations and by 1985 it owned and managed cellular telephone licenses serving Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York City, and Philadelphia. LIN Broadcasting sold its paging operations and six of its radio stations in 1986 to help finance the development of its cellular business.

In March 1990, McCaw Cellular Communications purchased a 52% interest in LIN Broadcasting. McCaw was acquired by AT&T in 1994, after which LIN Broadcasting's television operations were spun off as a public company traded on the NASDAQ stock market and 45%-owned by AT&T. The new company, LIN Television Corporation, owned and/or operated 12 stations and its stock price increased at a compounded annual growth rate of 31% between 1994 and 1998. During this period LIN acquired WIVB-TV in Buffalo, New York and WTNH in New Haven, Connecticut.[4]

In March 1998, LIN Television was acquired by Hicks, Muse, Tate & Furst, a leading private investment firm based in Dallas, Texas. At the time of the HMTF acquisition, LIN contributed its Dallas NBC affiliate, KXAS-TV, to a joint venture with the network that also held the San Diego affiliate (KNSD).[5] Under HMTFs ownership, LIN Television has grown considerably through a wide range of transactions:

In June 1999, LIN acquired WOOD-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Former parent LIN Broadcasting had owned the station from 1983 to 1994, when it merged with AT&T. However, LIN TV had continued to operate it.

In August, LIN helped finance the establishment of the now-defunct Banks Broadcasting, a minority-owned television broadcast company in which it held a 50% interest. Banks owned two stations — both of which became CW Television Network affiliates under Banks: KWCV (now KSCW-DT) in Wichita, Kansas and KNIN-TV in Boise, Idaho (the latter has since switched its network affiliation to Fox).

LIN purchased WAPA-TV in San Juan, Puerto Rico in October. In April 2000, LIN acquired WLFI-TV, serving Lafayette, Indiana in exchange for 66% of WAND. LIN continued to provide management oversight for WAND for several years after the swap was completed.

LIN purchased WWLP in Springfield, Massachusetts in 2000. In 2001, LIN acquired WJPX and two satellite facilities in Puerto Rico, and WNLO in Buffalo.

The company exercised and closed on options to purchase WOTV in Battle Creek, Michigan and WVBT in Norfolk, Virginia, both stations that it had already managed, in January 2002.

In February, LIN agreed to acquire seven stations in six markets from STC Broadcasting. The transaction of the stations was completed in May. Also in May, LIN TV Corp. completed the issuance of 19.55 million shares of Class A Common Stock through its Initial Public Offering on the New York Stock Exchange.

In December 2002, LIN TV announced the sale of two television stations in Abilene and San Angelo, Texas. This was followed in January 2004 by the sale of a station in Flint, Michigan.

In late August 2005, LIN purchased several stations from Emmis Communications: the stations purchased were WALA-TV and WBPG (now WFNA) in Mobile, Alabama, WTHI-TV in Terre Haute, Indiana, KRQE in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and WLUK-TV in Green Bay, Wisconsin. In July 2006, LIN announced the planned purchase a second station in New Mexico, KASA-TV, from Raycom Media.

In May, 2006, LIN TV announced the sale of Puerto Rico stations WAPA-TV and WJPX to InterMedia Partners for $130 million.[6]

In November 2007, LIN TV completed the sale of its share of WAND to Block Communications. With this sale, LIN TV no longer manages the station.

On October 3, 2008, LIN TV's stations were dropped from Time Warner Cable, due to a dispute over "retransmission fees."[7] LIN's stations returned to Time Warner on October 29, 2008.[8]

Also during Fall 2008, LIN TV and Fox Interactive Media developed a new Web CMS platform which would initially host the Web sites of all of the stations owned by LIN TV and those owned by Fox Television Stations. This division would be spun off in 2009 as the independent company Canvas Technology, which would change its name to EndPlay in 2010. With Fox Television Stations abandoning the EndPlay platform in favor of WorldNow during 2012, LIN TV will become EndPlay's largest client, followed by the E. W. Scripps Company (which adopted the EndPlay platform during 2010).

On August 7, 2009, LIN TV introduced mobile TV BlackBerry service on six of its stations, with plans for 27 more stations to be added. The strategy accompanies a 20 percent second-quarter revenue decline at the same time digital revenue has risen 52 percent.[9]

On October 6, 2009, LIN TV acquired RM Media, an online advertising and media services startup based in Austin. RM Media connects targeted audiences with advertisers and publishers based on demographic, psychographic and consumer behaviors to enhance branding and maximize client return on investment. RM Media developed extensive proprietary technology including a consumer- and advertiser-friendly video player, a top 35 comScore display ad network, a highly effective Search Engine Optimization and Search Engine Marketing process, and acquired and integrated two companies that specialize in web development and lead generation, launched two top 100 comScore proprietary websites and services several Fortune 500 clients.[10]

A rebranding to LIN Media was announced on April 13, 2010; although the corporate name remained LIN TV Corporation, the new name emphasized the company's Internet and mobile interests.[11]

On June 4, 2010, LIN TV reached a deal with ACME Communications on a shared services agreement involving ACME and LIN-owned stations in the Green Bay, Dayton, and Albuquerque markets. LIN TV would then provide technical, engineering, promotional, administrative and other operational support services for ACME's CW stations, as well as provide advertising sales services under a related but separate joint sales agreement.[12] This was followed on September 2 by the announcement that LIN would be acquiring two of the ACME stations, WBDT in Dayton, Ohio and WIWB in Green Bay, Wisconsin. WIWB, which has since taken the new calls WCWF, would become owned by LIN outright while WBDT would be technically owned by Vaughan Media but controlled by LIN who would hold an ownership stake in that company. The FCC approved the sales of WBDT and WCWF in April 2011.[13]

On March 4, 2011, LIN TV's contract with Dish Network expired, and all 31 LIN TV affiliated stations were pulled from local Dish Network broadcasts. LIN TV initially demanded a price increase of 140% from Dish Network, a number that skyrocketed to 175% after the contract expired. The channels returned to Dish Network on March 13, 2011.[14]

2012: New Vision acquisition, NBC sale[edit]

On May 7, 2012, LIN TV announced that it will acquire the 13 television stations owned by New Vision Television for $330.4 million and the assumption of $12 million in debt. The agreement includes operational control of three stations currently owned by PBC Broadcasting involved in shared service agreements with New Vision-owned stations in three markets. The three PBC-owned stations (KTKA-TV in Topeka, Kansas,[15] WTGS in Savannah, Georgia[16] and WYTV in Youngstown, Ohio[17]) were sold to Vaughan Media, LLC, but are operated by LIN TV under shared service agreements.[18] The transaction was finalized on October 12.[19][20]

On February 13, 2013, LIN TV announced that it would be re-organized into a new company, LIN Media, LLC. Also on that date, LIN pulled out of its Station Venture Operations joint venture with NBCUniversal, giving NBC 100% ownership of KNSD and KXAS-TV. LIN paid NBC around $100 million to allow for the transaction.[21] The re-organization was completed on July 30.[22]

2014: Media General merger[edit]

On March 21, 2014, LIN announced that it would merge with Media General. The deal, worth an estimated $1.6 billion, would create an entity of 71 stations (adjusted for side deals and divestitures) that would reach approximately 24% of U.S. television households. In order to comply with FCC ownership rules as well as planned changes to rules regarding same-market television stations which would prohibit future joint sales agreements, Media General and LIN plan to divest or swap stations that both companies own in Birmingham, Green Bay, Mobile, Providence and Savannah.[23][24][25]

Although the combined company will take on the Media General name, the company will be run by the principal staff of LIN, including CEO Vincent Sadusky, who will replace Media General's CEO George Mahoney post-merger. In total, 45 Media General staff members will be laid off as part of the merger.[26]

On August 20, 2014, LIN announced that it would sell WLUK and WCWF to Sinclair Broadcast Group in exchange for KXRM, KXTU, and WTTA. Hearst Television will acquire WJCL, and Meredith Corporation will acquire WALA.[27]

On October 6, 2014 The shareholders of Media General and LIN Media have approved the merger between the two companies.[28]


Television stations owned and/or operated by LIN[edit]

Stations are arranged alphabetically by state and by city of license.

  • (**) – Indicates that it was built and signed on by LIN.
City of license / Market Station Channel
Owned Since Network Affiliation
Birmingham, Alabama WIAT 42 (30) 2012 CBS
Mobile - Gulf Shores, Alabama WALA-TV 10 (9) 2005 Fox
WFNA 55 (25) 2006 The CW
New Haven - Hartford, Connecticut WTNH 8 (10) 1994 ABC
WCTX 59 (39) 1995 MyNetworkTV
Savannah, Georgia - Hardeeville, South Carolina WJCL 22 (22) 2012 ABC
WTGS 1 28 (28) 2012 Fox
Honolulu, Hawaii KHON-TV 2 (8) 2012 Fox
Hilo, Hawaii KHAW-TV
(Satellite of KHON)
11 (11) 2012 Fox
Wailuku, Hawaii KAII-TV
(Satellite of KHON)
7 (7) 2012 Fox
Fort Wayne, Indiana WANE-TV 15 (31) 1984 CBS
Indianapolis - Marion, Indiana WISH-TV 8 (9) 1984 CBS (until January 1, 2015)
WNDY-TV 23 (32) 2005 MyNetworkTV
WIIH-CD 17 (8) 1992 CBS (Translator for WISH-TV)
Lafayette, Indiana WLFI-TV 18 (11) 2000 CBS
Terre Haute, Indiana WTHI-TV 10 (10) 2005 CBS
Fox/MyNetworkTV (DT2)
Mason City, Iowa - Rochester, Minnesota KIMT 3 (42) 2012 CBS
MyNetworkTV (DT2)
Topeka, Kansas KSNT 27 (27) 2012 NBC
KTMJ-CD 43 (43) 2012 Fox
KTKA-TV 1 49 (49) 2012 ABC
The CW (DT3)
Wichita, Kansas KSNW 3 (45) 2012 NBC
Great Bend, Kansas KSNC
(Satellite of KSNW)
2 (22) 2012 NBC
Garden City, Kansas KSNG
(Satellite of KSNW)
11 (11) 2012 NBC
McCook, Nebraska KSNK
(Satellite of KSNW)
8 (12) 2012 NBC
Salina, Kansas KSNL-LD
(Satellite of KSNW)
47 (47) 2012 NBC
Springfield, Massachusetts WWLP 22 (11) 2000 NBC
(Satellite of WWLP)
28 (28) 2006 NBC
Grand Rapids, Michigan WOOD-TV 8 (7) 1999
(previously owned 1972–1994)
WXSP-CD 15 (15) 2002 MyNetworkTV
Battle Creek, Michigan WOTV 41 (20) 2001 ABC
Albuquerque - Santa Fe, New Mexico KRQE 13 (13) 2005 CBS
KASA-TV 2 (27) 2007 Fox
KWBQ 2 29 (19) 2010 The CW
KASY-TV 2 50 (45) 2010 MyNetworkTV
Roswell, New Mexico KBIM-TV
(Satellite of KRQE)
10 (10) 2005 CBS
(Satellite of KWBQ)
21 (21) 2010 The CW
Durango, Colorado KREZ-TV
(Satellite of KRQE)
6 (15) 2005 CBS
Buffalo, New York WIVB-TV 4 (39) 1995 CBS
WNLO 23 (32) 2001 The CW
Dayton - Springfield, Ohio WDTN 2 (50) 2002 NBC
WBDT 1 26 (26) 2010 The CW
Youngstown, Ohio WKBN-TV 27 (41) 2012 CBS
WYFX-LD 19 (19) 2012 Fox
WYTV 1 33 (36) 2012 ABC
MyNetworkTV (DT2)
Portland, Oregon KOIN 6 (40) 2012 CBS
Providence, Rhode Island WPRI-TV 12 (13) 2002 CBS
WNAC-TV 3 64 (12) 2001 Fox
MyNetworkTV (DT2)
Austin, Texas KXAN-TV 36 (21) 1979 NBC
KNVA 1 54 (49) 1994 The CW
(Satellite of KBVO)
51 (51) 2001 MyNetworkTV
Llano, Texas KBVO ** 14 (27) 1987 MyNetworkTV
Norfolk - Portsmouth - Newport News, Virginia WAVY-TV 10 (31) 1968 NBC
WVBT 43 (29) 1995 Fox
Green Bay - Suring, Wisconsin WLUK-TV 11 (11) 2005 Fox
WCWF 14 (21) 2010 The CW


  • 1 Owned by Vaughan Media, LLC, LIN operates the stations through a Local Marketing Agreement.
  • 2 Owned by Tamer Media, LLC, LIN operates the stations through a Shared Services Agreement.
  • 3 Owned by Super Towers, LIN operates WNAC through a local marketing agreement.

Former LIN stations[edit]

City of license / Market Station Channel
Years Owned Current Ownership Status
San Diego, California KNSD 39 (40) 1997-1998 1 NBC owned-and-operated (O&O)
Decatur - Springfield - Champaign, Illinois WAND 17 (17) 1966-2000 2 NBC affiliate owned by Block Communications
Wichita, Kansas KAKE-TV 10 (10) 1999-2000 ABC affiliate owned by Gray Television
Colby, Kansas KLBY
(Satellite of KAKE)
4 (17) 1999-2000 ABC affiliate owned by Gray Television
Dodge City, Kansas KUPK-TV
(Satellite of KAKE)
13 (13) 1999-2000 ABC affiliate owned by Gray Television
Bay City-Flint-Saginaw, Michigan WEYI-TV 25 (30) 2002-2004 NBC affiliate owned by Howard Stirk Holdings
(Operated through a LMA by Sinclair Broadcast Group)
Omaha, Nebraska WOWT 6 (22) 1999-2000 NBC affiliate owned by Gray Television
Columbus, Ohio WWHO 53 (46) 2005-2012 The CW affiliate owned by Manhan Media, Inc.
(Operated through a LMA by Sinclair Broadcast Group)
Toledo, Ohio WUPW 36 (46) 2002-2012 Fox affiliate owned by American Spirit Media
(Operated through a LMA by Raycom Media)
Abilene, Texas KRBC-TV 9 (29) 2002-2003 NBC affiliate owned by Mission Broadcasting
(Operated through a LMA by Nexstar Broadcasting Group)
Fort Worth-Dallas, Texas KXAS-TV 5 (41) 1975-1998 1 NBC owned-and-operated (O&O)
San Angelo, Texas KACB-TV 3 (16) 2002-2003 NBC affiliate, KSAN-TV, owned by Mission Broadcasting
(Operated through a LMA by Nexstar Broadcasting Group)
San Juan, Puerto Rico WAPA-TV 4 (27) 1998-2007 Independent station owned by Hemisphere Media Group
(InterMedia Partners, 73%;Azteca Acquisition Corporation, 27%)
WJPX 24 (21) 2001-2007 MundoFox affiliate, owned by América CV Network
  • 1 Through Station Venture Operations, LIN kept 24% ownership of these stations from 1998 to 2013.[29] LIN did not manage these stations, and for all intents and purposes they were NBC owned-and-operated stations. Both stations are now wholly owned by NBCUniversal outright.[21]
  • 2 LIN kept 33% ownership of WAND from 2000 to 2007.

LIN TV also previously held a 50% share in Banks Broadcasting, which owned two stations:


  1. ^ a b "Lin Television in Deal". The New York Times. December 30, 1994. Retrieved February 17, 2013. "The newly formed Lin Television Corporation…part of the previously announced transfer of ownership of Lin Television by the Lin Broadcasting Corporation to its shareholders. The transfer was also completed today." 
  2. ^ "LIN TV 2012 Annual Report- SEC Filings". LIN TV. Retrieved 6 October 2012. 
  3. ^ Romano, Allison (2006-07-13). "LIN Taps Sandusky as CEO". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved 2009-08-11. 
  4. ^ "TV: The next generation -- Head of LIN TV in Providence looks ahead". Providence Journal. 3 September 1995. Retrieved 21 July 2012. 
  5. ^ Myerson, Allen R. (October 23, 1997). "Hicks, Muse, Aided by NBC, Sweetens Lin Television Bid". The New York Times. Retrieved February 17, 2013. 
  6. ^ "LIN TV to Sell Puerto Rico Operations". Business Wire. 2006-10-19. Retrieved 2009-08-12. 
  7. ^ "Lin TV dark on Time Warner". Reueters. 2009-10-06. Retrieved 2009-08-12. 
  8. ^ Retrieved on 2009-08-11.
  9. ^ Eggerton, John (2009-08-07). "LIN TV Develops Blackberry App For Mobile TV Service". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved 2009-08-11. 
  10. ^ [1][dead link]
  11. ^ Eggerton, John (April 13, 2010). "LIN TV Rebrands as LIN Media". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved April 13, 2010. 
  12. ^ "LIN, ACME Share Services in Three Markets", from, June 4, 2010
  13. ^ Source: FCC Daily Digest of 4/7/2011
  14. ^ Nordyke, Kimberly (March 13, 2011). "Dish Network, Lin TV End Carriage Dispute After Eight-Day Blackout". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  15. ^ "CDBS Print". 2011-12-31. Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  16. ^ "CDBS Print". 2011-12-31. Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  17. ^ "CDBS Print". Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  18. ^ Tweets and Retweets From the Editors (2012-05-18). "LIN-New Vision Tops A Week Of TV Sales". Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  19. ^ Malone, Michael (May 7, 2012). "LIN Acquiring New Vision Stations for $330 Million". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved May 7, 2012. 
  20. ^ Malone, Michael (2012-10-15). "LIN Closes On $330 Million New Vision Deal | Broadcasting & Cable". Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  21. ^ a b "LIN exits NBC joint venture, plans reorg". Retrieved 13 February 2013. 
  22. ^ "LIN Media LLC Announces Completion of Merger with LIN TV Corp.". LIN Meia. Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  23. ^ TV Station Mega Merger: Media General, LIN Set $1.6 Billion Deal from Variety (March 21, 2014)
  24. ^ Media General acquiring LIN Media for $1.6 billion, Los Angeles Times, March 21, 2014.
  25. ^ Media Gen/LIN To Sell/Swap In Five Markets, TVNewsCheck, March 21, 2014.
  26. ^ "Setting The New Order At New Media General". TVNewsCheck. 9 July 2014. Retrieved 4 August 2014. 
  27. ^
  28. ^ [2]
  29. ^ "NBCUniversal 2011Annual Report/ 10K". NBCUniversal. Retrieved October 19, 2012. 

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