In the $23 million Barnstable-Connoisseur sale, everybody wants to know the multiple.
Mike Bergner, one of the brokers involved (along with Kalil & Co.) refuses to open up about cash flow multiples for the Long Island transaction, though he knows it’s a highly-prized number. What Bergner will talk about is the turn in the station sale market, after some very ugly years. He says “Radio has bottomed…we’re entering a period where people who know the business well are seeing the stability of the advertising market” and are looking at possible acquisitions in a meaningful way. He jokes people now know “we’re not gonna die” as an industry, and even some lenders are turning around. But this isn’t 1999 deja vu. Finding financing for deals under $10 million is still almost in the “forget it” range – you’d need to bring in a lot of equity and tap private investors, friends, etc. However, if you’re Connoisseur CEO Jeff Warshaw, with eight other markets and a strong track record, you have access to lenders. Quick review of the deal – Al Kaneb’s Barnstable is selling AC “K-Joy” WKJY (98.3), oldies “B103″ WBZO, Generation X-targeted “94X” WIGX, and standards WHLI at 1100. The price is $23 million – and this deal may well be a catalyst for the whole station-trading market. You may have also first found out about the sale in Monday’s TRI Extra afternoon headlines.