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LIN Media

LIN Media, LLC
Traded as NYSE: LIN
Industry Broadcast Television
Television Production
Fate Merged with Media General
Predecessor LIN Broadcasting
LIN TV Corporation
New Vision Television
Founded 1994[1]
Defunct December 19, 2014
Headquarters Providence, Rhode Island Austin, Texas
Area served
United States (Nationwide)
Key people
Vincent L. Sadusky, CEO
Products Broadcast television
Revenue $443.5 million USD
$247.44 million USD
$274.5 million USD
Owner HM Capital Partners (70%) [2]
Number of employees
2,414 (full-time)
Subsidiaries Red McCombs Media
The former LIN TV logo.

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

LIN Media's Chief Executive Officer was 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]


  • History 1
    • 2012: New Vision acquisition, NBC sale 1.1
    • 2014: Media General merger 1.2
  • Former LIN-owned television stations 2
  • References 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 the secondary commercial license of PBS member station WNEQ in Buffalo from the Western New York Public Broadcasting Association, re-launching it as commercial station WNLO.

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

On May 7, 2012, LIN TV announced that it will acquire the 13 television stations owned by

  1. ^ a b "Lin Television in Deal".  
  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".  
  4. ^ "TV: The next generation -- Head of LIN TV in Providence looks ahead".  
  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".  
  10. ^ [2]
  11. ^ Eggerton, John (April 13, 2010). "LIN TV Rebrands as LIN Media".  
  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".  
  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." (PDF). LIN Meia. Retrieved 2014-03-24. 
  23. ^ "TV Station Mega Merger: Media General, LIN Set $1.6 Billion Deal" Variety, March 21, 2014. Retrieved December 15, 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. ^ "Media General, LIN Sell Stations In 5 Markets". TVNewsCheck. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  27. ^ "Media General, LIN Shareholders Vote Yes on Merger". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  28. ^ "FCC Okays Media General/LIN Merger". Broadcasting & Cable. Retrieved 16 December 2014. 
  29. ^ Media General Completes Merger With LIN Media, Press Release, Media General, Retrieved 19 December, 2014
  30. ^ "Setting The New Order At New Media General". TVNewsCheck. 9 July 2014. Retrieved 4 August 2014. 
  31. ^ "NBCUniversal 2011Annual Report/ 10K" (PDF).  


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

  • 1 Through Station Venture Operations, LIN kept 24% ownership of these stations from 1998 to 2013.[31] 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 Owned by Vaughan Media, LIN operated the stations through a Local Marketing Agreement.
  • 3 LIN kept 33% ownership of WAND from 2000 to 2007.
  • 4 Owned by Tamer Media, LLC, LIN operated the stations through a Shared Services Agreement.
  • 5 Owned by Super Towers, LIN operated WNAC through a local marketing agreement.


  • (**) – Indicates that it was built and signed on by LIN.
  • (++) – Indicates a station acquired by LIN from Emmis Communications in 2005. KHON, KOIN, KSNT & KSNW were acquired by Montecito Broadcast Group in 2006. These stations would eventually be acquired by LIN in 2012.
  • (¤¤) – Indicates a station owned by New Vision Television prior to its acquisition by LIN in 2012.

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

Former LIN-owned television stations

The deal was approved by shareholders on October 6, 2014,[27] and by the FCC on December 12, 2014.[28] The merger was completed on December 19. [29] Although the combined company adopted the Media General name, the company is now run by the principal staff of LIN, including CEO Vincent Sadusky, who replaced Media General's CEO George Mahoney post-merger. In total, 45 Media General staff members were laid off as part of the merger.[30]

On March 21, 2014, LIN announced that it would sell itself to Savannah.[23][24][25] The companies will swap 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.[26]

2014: Media General merger

[22]. Also on that date, LIN pulled out of its Station Venture Operations joint venture with LIN Media, LLC On February 13, 2013, LIN TV announced that it would be re-organized into a new company,

[20][19] The transaction was finalized on October 12.[18]) were sold to Vaughan Media, LLC, but are operated by LIN TV under shared service agreements.[17]Youngstown, Ohio in WYTV and [16]

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