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OdessaMidland, Texas
United States
CityOdessa, Texas
BrandingNewsWest 9
SloganThe Star of West Texas
More News. More Often.
ChannelsDigital: 9 (VHF)
Virtual: 9 (PSIP)
Subchannels9.1 NBC
9.2 CW+
9.3 Telemundo
AffiliationsNBC (1981–present)
OwnerRaycom Media
(sale to Gray Television pending;[1] to be resold to Tegna Inc. thereafter[2])
(KWES License Subsidiary, LLC)
First air dateDecember 1, 1958 (60 years ago) (1958-12-01)
Call letters' meaningWESt Texas
Sister station(s)KTLE-LP
Former callsignsKVKM-TV (1958–1969)
KMOM-TV (1969–1981)
KTPX-TV (1981–1993)
Former channel number(s)Analog: 9 (VHF, 1958–2009)
Digital: 13 (VHF, until 2009)
Former affiliationsABC (1958–1981)
Transmitter power94.4 kW
Height391.3 m (1,284 ft)
Facility ID42007
Transmitter coordinates31°59′17″N 102°52′43″W / 31.98806°N 102.87861°W / 31.98806; -102.87861
Licensing authorityFCC
Public license information:Profile

KWES-TV, virtual and VHF digital channel 9, is an NBC-affiliated television station licensed to Odessa, Texas, United States and serving the Permian Basin area. Owned by Raycom Media, it is a sister station to low-power Telemundo affiliate KTLE-LP, channel 20 (which is simulcast on KWES-TV's third digital subchannel). The two stations share studios on West County Road 127 in Midland; KWES-TV's transmitter is located near Notrees, Texas.

KWES-TV also operates a full satellite station, KWAB-TV (virtual channel 4, UHF digital channel 33) in Big Spring, with transmitter on US 87 north of the city.


The station began broadcasting on December 1, 1958 as KVKM-TV in Monahans, Texas, an ABC affiliate. It was originally owned by Tri-Cities Broadcasters, which co-owned KVKM radio (1340 AM; now KCKM 1330). Initially broadcasting from a 777-foot (237 m) tower between Kermit and Monahans (shared with the radio station), KVKM-TV moved to a 1,080-foot (330 m) tower at the edge of the Caprock on February 1, 1963. For a brief period of time in the early 1960s (about 1963), the station operated a semi-satellite TV station, KVLF-TV, on channel 12 in Alpine (also serving Marfa and Fort Davis) that also featured localized programming to the Alpine, Sul Ross State University and the Big Bend region. Said TV station was owned by Big Bend Broadcasters, who also owned KVLF radio (1240 AM). KVLF-TV went off the air by 1965 as cable penetration provided residents of the Alpine area with television coverage from the Midland–Odessa market.[3]

Grayson Enterprises (named for Sidney Grayson but after 1964 not owned) bought the station in 1969 and renamed it KMOM-TV, for Monahans-Odessa-Midland. Grayson added other stations to his operation during the late 1960s and 1970s, including KCCN (now KKEA) in Honolulu, Hawaii, KLBK-TV in Lubbock, Texas, and KTXS-TV in Abilene/Sweetwater, Texas, among others.

Under Grayson's ownership, KVKM added two satellite stations: KWAB, and KAVE-TV (channel 6) in Carlsbad, New Mexico. The latter station served as a KVKM/KMOM satellite from 1966 until 1969, when KVKM was sold to Grayson, and KAVE became a satellite of KELP-TV in El Paso. KAVE later sold to Stanley Marsh 3 and continued as a satellite of KVIA-TV in El Paso. (KAVE later became KOCT, a satellite of KOAT-TV in Albuquerque, New Mexico.)

However, Grayson Enterprises ran into license renewal trouble in 1968, 1971, 1974, and 1977 for some of its stations. These stations were accused of fraudulent billing, program and transmitter log fabrication, main studio violations, failure to make required technical tests, and other issues. The stations had their renewals deferred and hearings ordered as a result.

The case was settled in what was then described as a "distress sale", in which Grayson's stations were broken up and sold to minority-controlled groups (nowadays known as historically-underutilized groups) at a reduced price. The parameters of such a sale were defined by this sell-off. As a result, Grayson sold both stations to Permian Basin Television Corporation in 1980, while KLBK and KTXS went to Prima, Inc. (whose principals were African American).

The station swapped affiliations with KMID-TV (channel 2) on June 11, 1981 and joined NBC. Simultaneous with the affiliation swap, channel 9 changed its call letters to KTPX-TV and moved its studio operations to a new building on County Road 127 in Midland. Permian Basin Television sold the station to MSP Television in 1985. Drewry Communications bought the station in 1991. On August 16, 1993, the call letters were changed to KWES-TV. (KTPX-TV is now assigned to the Ion Television affiliate in Tulsa, Oklahoma.)

Drewry had planned to sell its stations to London Broadcasting in 2008;[4] however, by January 2009, the deal fell through.[5]

In addition to NBC programming, KWES became the home of Dallas Cowboys preseason television broadcasts in 2011, gaining the rights from Fox affiliate KPEJ-TV (channel 24). The rights gave Drewry all Dallas Cowboys preseason rights in West Texas, as KTLE-LP had held the Spanish-language rights since 2006. KWES held Houston Texans preseason TV rights in 2002 and 2003 (during a period when NBC did not hold any NFL rights), but ratings were low due to the broadcasts being tape-delayed until Sunday afternoon. KWES chose to let go of the Texans preseason rights, and they weren't picked up again until 2010 when KPEJ picked them up. KWES lost the rights to the English-language broadcasts of Cowboys preseason games in 2013.

KWES lost rights to LATV on December 29, 2013, but they were able to gain the rights to The CW from KWWT. As a result, KWES now airs The CW programming on KWES-DT2 with The CW Plus feed. On June 12, 2014, KWES-DT2's CW feed was made available to local Dish Network subscribers on Channel 10.

On August 10, 2015, Raycom Media announced that it would purchase Drewry Communications for $160 million.[6] The sale was completed on December 1. [7]

Pending sale to Gray Television and resale to Tegna[edit]

On June 25, 2018, Atlanta-based Gray Television, owner of KOSA-TV, announced it had reached an agreement with Raycom to merge their respective broadcasting assets (consisting of Raycom's 63 existing owned-and/or-operated television stations, including KWES and KWAB, and Gray's 93 television stations) under the former's corporate umbrella. The cash-and-stock merger transaction valued at $3.6 billion – in which Gray shareholders would acquire preferred stock currently held by Raycom – will require divestment of either KOSA or KWES due to FCC ownership regulations prohibiting common ownership of two of the four highest-rated stations in a single market (as well as more than two stations in any market). Gray announced it would retain KOSA, and sell KWES to an unrelated third party.[8][1][9][10] On August 20, it was announced that Tegna Inc. would buy KWES and sister station WTOL in Toledo, Ohio for $105 million.[2] This would make KWES a sister station to 11 other stations across Texas, including fellow NBC affiliate KCEN-TV in Temple (and its semi-satellite KAGS-LD in College Station); CBS affiliates KENS in San Antonio, KHOU in Houston and KYTX in Tyler; ABC affiliates KBMT in Beaumont, KIII in Corpus Christi, KVUE in Austin and WFAA in Dallas; and Fox affiliates KIDY in San Angelo and KXVA in Abilene.


(satellite of KWES-TV)
Big Spring, Texas
United States
Brandingsee KWES infobox
Slogansee KWES infobox
ChannelsDigital: 33 (UHF)
Virtual: 4 (PSIP)
Subchannels4.1 NBC
4.2 CW+
4.3 Telemundo
AffiliationsNBC (1981–present)
OwnerRaycom Media
(sale to Gray Television pending[1])
(KWES License Subsidiary, LLC)
First air dateJanuary 15, 1956 (62 years ago) (1956-01-15)
Call letters' meaningWebb Air Force Base
Sister station(s)KTLE-LP
Former callsignsKBST-TV (1956–1957)
KEDY-TV (1957–1962)
Former channel number(s)Analog:
4 (VHF, 1956–2009)
Transmitter power33.5 kW
Height83.3 m (273 ft)
Facility ID42008
Transmitter coordinates32°16′55.4″N 101°29′35.5″W / 32.282056°N 101.493194°W / 32.282056; -101.493194 (KWAB-TV)
Licensing authorityFCC
Public license information:
satellite of KWES-TV) Profile

satellite of KWES-TV) CDBS

KWAB began operations in 1956 as KBST-TV, owned by the Big Spring Herald along with KBST radio (1490 AM). The station carried programming from all three networks; however, it was hampered by the presence of KMID-TV in Midland, which carried NBC and some ABC programming, and KOSA-TV (channel 7) in Odessa, which carried CBS, which limited KBST's network programming. Consequently, the station had little success. The radio station was eventually sold to the Snyder Corporation (co-owned by Ted Snyder, who later acquired KARN in Little Rock, Arkansas, and B. Winston Wrinkle), while a half interest in KBST-TV was transferred to Dub Rogers' Texas Telecasting, owner of KDUB-TV in Lubbock (now KLBK-TV) and part-owner of KVER-TV in Clovis, New Mexico (now KVIH-TV). Rogers then changed the call letters of the station to KEDY-TV.

The studios and tower were located at the edge of Howard College campus at 2500 Kentucky Way. Local shows were produced on and off until the late 1960s. Otherwise, KEDY largely became a semi-satellite of KDUB. In 1961, Rogers sold his stations to Grayson Enterprises. Soon afterward, the station took its current KWAB callsign (for Webb Air Force Base), and switched from simulcasting KDUB to KPAR-TV (now KTXS-TV) in Sweetwater. However, both KDUB and KPAR were primarily affiliated with CBS (though KPAR also had a secondary ABC affiliation), resulting at times in KWAB duplicating KOSA. Soon after Grayson's acquisition of KVKM-TV, KWAB began to simulcast that station, alleviating the duplication.

For many years, the stations did some Big Spring production, most of which aired on a delayed basis. Today in Big Spring was recorded in Big Spring and fed back to the Midland studios over the company microwave system. This microwave link proved pivotal for KWES during the February 2008 Alon USA refinery explosion, allowing the station to provide live skycam images and live pictures in the hours immediately after the blast.

As part of Gray Television's acquisition of Raycom Media (pending FCC approval), KWES-TV will be divested, but KWAB will be retained and converted to a satellite of Gray's KOSA-TV.[11]

Digital television[edit]

Digital channels[edit]

The station's digital channel is multiplexed:

Channel Video Aspect PSIP Short Name Programming[12][13]
1080i 16:9 KWES-DT
Main programming / NBC
480i 4:3 KWES-D2
The CW Plus
Simulcast of KTLE-LP / Telemundo

Analog-to-digital conversion[edit]

KWES-TV and KWAB-TV shut down their analog signals respectively on June 12, 2009, the official date in which full-power television stations in the United States transitioned from analog to digital broadcasts under federal mandate. The station's digital channel allocations post-transition are as follows:[14]

  • KWES-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 9; the station's digital signal relocated from its pre-transition VHF channel 13 to channel 9 for post-transition operations.
  • KWAB-TV shut down its analog signal, over VHF channel 4; the station's digital signal remained on its pre-transition UHF channel 33. Through the use of PSIP, digital television receivers display the station's virtual channel as its former VHF analog channel 4.


Syndicated programming on KWES/KWAB includes The Ellen DeGeneres Show, The Doctors, Inside Edition, and Dr. Phil among others. The latter three shows are distributed by CBS Television Distribution.


  1. ^ a b c Miller, Mark K. (June 25, 2018). "Gray To Buy Raycom For $3.6 Billion". TVNewsCheck. NewsCheckMedia. Retrieved June 25, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "TEGNA to Acquire the Leading Television Stations WTOL in Toledo, OH, and KWES in Odessa-Midland, TX". Tegna Inc. August 20, 2018. Retrieved August 20, 2018.
  3. ^ alpine abc%22
  4. ^ "London Broadcasting Acquires KWES-TV". KWES NewsWest 9. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
  5. ^ "London adds a market, leaves a crater". Television Business Report. January 16, 2009. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
  6. ^ Jessell, Harry A. (August 10, 2015). "Raycom Buying Drewry For $160 Million". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved August 10, 2015.
  7. ^ Raycom Media Completes $160 Million Acquisition of Drewry Communications Broadcasting & Cable, Retrieved 1 December, 2015.
  8. ^ "GRAY AND RAYCOM TO COMBINE IN A $3.6 BILLION TRANSACTION". Raycom Media (Press release). June 25, 2018.
  9. ^ John Eggerton (June 25, 2018). "Gray Buying Raycom for $3.6B". Broadcasting & Cable. NewBay Media.
  10. ^ Dade Hayes (June 25, 2018). "Gray Acquiring Raycom For $3.65B, Forming No. 3 Local TV Group". Deadline Hollywood. Penske Media Corporation.
  11. ^ "FCC Filing: Gray Acquisition of Raycom Comprehensive Exhibit".
  12. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KWES
  13. ^ RabbitEars TV Query for KWAB
  14. ^ "DTV Tentative Channel Designations for the First and the Second Rounds" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-08-29. Retrieved 2012-03-24.

External links[edit]