Red Zebra Broadcasting
|Headquarters||Silver Spring, MD|
|Key people||Rick Carmean, CEO|
Red Zebra Broadcasting is a media company based in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States. The primary investors in Red Zebra are Daniel Snyder, better known as the owner of the Washington Redskins football franchise, and Dwight Schar, a minority owner of the team. Both are members of the parent company’s board of directors, but have no operating role. Bruce Gilbert, former general manager of ESPN Radio, was named chief executive officer of Red Zebra in March 2007, replacing Bennett Zier.
The "Red Zebra" name came after Daniel Snyder asked his original CEO, Bennett Zier, to name the new broadcasting company anything he wanted. Zier opened with Blue Zebra Broadcasting, an idea inspired by his nickname and initials. Snyder explained that "blue was the enemy. Cowboys. Giants," but he came back with a counteroffer: Red Zebra, a name that gave a little inside tribute to the team (Redskins), but still retained the hat tip to Zier's idea.
Red Zebra Broadcasting was born in January 2006 as a family of radio stations in the Washington D.C. area.
On June 4, 2008; The Washington Business Journal confirmed that Red Zebra made an agreement to purchase three of Clear Channel Communications radio stations in the Washington D.C. cluster. After the sale was approved, Red Zebra took over the following radio stations on July 1, 2008: WTEM Sports Talk 980; WTNT AM 570; and WWRC Progressive Talk 1260.
On July 1, 2008 it was announced that Red Zebra Broadcasting had expanded its reach into the Roanoke/Lynchburg market with acquisitions of three stations from Centennial Broadcasting. CEO Bruce Gilbert was quoted as saying, “For that entire time we’ve been looking for opportunities across the Mid-Atlantic. The Lynchburg and Roanoke region was an important market for them to fill in Virginia."
On August 15, 2008 Red Zebra announced that ESPN Deportes Radio, the only around-the-clock national Spanish-language sports radio network in the United States, will launch in Washington, D.C. as ESPN Deportes WXTR 730 AM on September 1, 2008.
On February 1, 2009 the LMA agreement between Red Zebra Broadcasting and Centennial Broadcasting was cancelled just after six months and Centennial took back over the stations.
Red Zebra currently owns and operates four Washington, D.C. area radio stations - (WTEM 980-AM (simulcast on WWXT 92.7-FM and WWXX 94.3-FM) and WSPZ 570-AM. These stations serve collectively as the flagship for the Redskins Radio Network. Red Zebra also owns the ESPN Radio all-sports station in Richmond, VA, (WXGI 950 AM), and the Fox Sports Radio affiliate in Norfolk/Virginia Beach, VA, heard on (WXTG-FM 102.1 FM) in Virginia Beach and on (WXTG 1490 AM) in Hampton, VA. All eight Red Zebra stations are part of the Redskins Radio Network.
In July 2008, Red Zebra merged WTEM with its Triple X ESPN Radio triplex in the Washington area, rebranding the quadplex as ESPN 980. WXTR was spun off from the quadplex to become an ESPN Deportes Radio affiliate in late 2008.
- Daniel Snyder
- company founder, primary investor;
- Mark Shapiro
- Rick Carmean
- chief executive officer;
- Press Release (retrieved June 5, 2008)
- Biz Journal (retrieved June 5, 2008)
- Article (retrieved June 5, 2008)
- Richmond Purchase(retrieved June 5, 2008
- VA Beach Purchase (retrieved June 5, 2008)
- "It's Official: Red Zebra buys 3 Clear Channel AMs in D.C.". Radio-Info.com. June 4, 2008. Retrieved June 4, 2008.
- , VARTV.com Pressroom. Accessed July 3, 2008.
- , Lynchburg News & Advance. Accessed July 3, 2008.
- , Redskins.com.
- , VARTV.com.
- Heath, Thomas (June 12, 2008). "Article". Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-06-12.