Shaw sells Corus

General Radio News and Comments, Satellite & Internet Radio and LPFM

Shaw sells Corus

Postby jon » Wed May 15, 2019 10:50 am

Shaw is selling its complete ownership position in Corus, as stock shares that anyone can buy on the open market.

Shaw will use the half billion dollars to pay down some of its debt.

The Globe & Mail reports that this comes after failed efforts to find a single buyer for the full 38% share that Shaw owned: https://news.google.com/articles/CBMidG ... id=CA%3Aen

Both Shaw and Corus stocks dropped heavily after the announcement. Corus was hit the hardest, down nearly 20%.
User avatar
jon
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 9180
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 9:15 am
Location: Edmonton

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby paterson » Wed May 15, 2019 1:31 pm

Since Shaw is no longer looking for a single buyer to purchase the 38% share of Corus, maybe this will make some of the radio stations more appealing to Pattison Radio Group or even Stingray. With the purchase last week of two stations in Welland ON, (pending approval) Stingray is closing in on Bell as the nations largest radio group.

As I have mentioned before it would be great if Pattison picked up some radio stations in the east. Corus has some strong stations and a few profitable nuggets in some medium markets. Also it is going to be interesting to see what happens with Global, who seem to be making a bit of a comeback ratings wise against CTV. Stingray isn't heavily involved in television, and I don't know if they are interested at all in a traditional broadcast system like Global.

Corus was a little late to the party in marrying the tv and radio operations similar to Bell. However they have done a fairly decent job over the past year with their Global Newsradio brand. Too bad if it gets lost in the shuffle ahead.
paterson
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 171
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:23 pm

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby Rocky » Thu May 16, 2019 10:36 am

It's an interesting puzzle. Most of the big guys are maxed out, at least FM wise in the major markets. I would hope the CRTC would never allow an increase in the number of stations that an operator could
own in one market. If that happened, we'd have another shit show like they have in the states.

I don't think companies like Pattison or Harvard would want to be adding AMs at this stage of the game.

Harvard could make a move and grab the Vancouver Corus FMs, the FMs in Winnipeg and one of the Calgary FMs. Rawlco could grab a Calgary FM. Nobody has room to add an FM in Edmonton.

I don't see Hildebrand or Vista adding any major market stations.

Will a new player arrive on the scene? Would Evanov make a move into the West?

Bell could add AMs in Edmonton and Calgary, I could see them grabbing CHED and then they'd have The Oilers that could move to 1260. Maybe Stingray could grab 880 and get a decent signal for Wetaskiwin.

Then again, maybe Rogers would have a shot at grabbing CHED and CHQT and they could do a decent All News AM and a SN AM.

Interesting times.
User avatar
Rocky
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 164
Joined: Tue Mar 19, 2013 3:47 pm
Location: Didsbury, AB

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby jon » Thu May 16, 2019 10:59 am

Rocky wrote:I would hope the CRTC would never allow an increase in the number of stations that an operator could own in one market.

Thinking back before the current Liberal government was elected federally, most of the Investment Analysts were betting big bucks that the CRTC would allow more FM's than the current limit of two per market.

I haven't heard a peep from them since Trudeau was elected.
User avatar
jon
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 9180
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 9:15 am
Location: Edmonton

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby WheresFredTaylor » Thu May 16, 2019 1:42 pm

Bell could add AMs in Edmonton and Calgary, I could see them grabbing CHED and then they'd have The Oilers that could move to 1260. Maybe Stingray could grab 880 and get a decent signal for Wetaskiwin.


Oilers rights are up after 2019-20, so they won't buy a station just to have the rights. And with Corus now on the block, it seems even more unlikely that a captainless ship would take on a major expenditure like Canadian NHL rights.
WheresFredTaylor
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 161
Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 8:34 pm

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby Tom Jeffries » Thu May 16, 2019 5:55 pm

This is a symptom of the current state of media, in Canada. Big changes are coming. Staffs have been chopped o the bone and still sales stagger, as the economy shakes.

Interesting times. Have a Plan "b' if you are in the business.

I learned the hard way, and I hope I am wrong.
Tom Jeffries
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 690
Joined: Mon May 06, 2013 8:06 am

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby pave » Fri May 17, 2019 3:27 am

During the last year of my on-air participation, I had to stick my finger down my throat before my shift so I wouldn't puke during the show.
What was previously only suspected became a demonstrated reality:
We were no longer working with and/or for "Broadcasters".
Instead, we were toiling for and tolerating uninformed business people who just happened to own radio stations.
The same situation still applies.
As a result, audiences, advertisers and employees are obliged to suffer while ownership indifference is part of the modus operandi.
And that, boys & girls, is an extremely tough nut to crack.
pave
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 1517
Joined: Tue May 23, 2006 11:22 am

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby tuned » Fri May 17, 2019 8:50 am

The CRTC sold out Canadians by allowing pipeline owners to own the content creators as well. Shaw has expertise in using public property to string cable and make billions. They never should have been allowed to own radio or television stations. The CRTC has destroyed an entire industry and consolidated the power of opinion in a few hands. When challenged they will claim they "had to do it" and blame the internet. The ownership restrictions and caps worked for decades and never should have been removed.
User avatar
tuned
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 1207
Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 5:06 pm

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby paterson » Fri May 17, 2019 10:46 am

I think to say that the CRTC destroyed an entire industry is a real stretch. I am not convinced that radio is in any worse shape in Canada than the US, UK or Australia etc. The programming in some of these markets may be stronger than here but the CRTC does not program radio stations, broadcasters do, some much better than others.

In fact I would argue that the radio business in Canada is in better shape than the print and television industries. The CRTC continues to license new stations every year, and why would companies like Stingray, Bell, Pattison, Rogers, Vista etc. invest so heavily in radio if it was such a poor investment or a dying business? To me Shaw has always had a strange corporate set up with Corus. There could be other reasons they want to unload the broadcast company that we are not aware of. Could be that they are just not interested any longer, who knows?

Sure consolidation is a concern, but we have heard arguments for and against taking this even further. In my viewpoint the biggest problem with radio overall is programming and not so much ownership of stations. The programming on radio is becoming boring and less creative, with cookie cutter formats. Local content and the personalities on many stations are being suppressed. I blame this on laziness and programming that is not focused on the audience.

Of course you can argue that this is all happening because of consolidation, yes in some ways it is. But also listening to stations in smaller ownership groups or even independents, often seem to be going down this road as well.

I tend to be an optimist and I think selling Corus up in chunks or bits and pieces may be the best solution. This will give smaller broadcasting groups an opportunity to pick up some stations. Bell is pretty much tapped out now, Stingray would have an opportunity for some stations, Rogers possibly, Pattison hopefully, but I think this is a great chance for some smaller groups to move up the rung a few steps. Interesting times.
paterson
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 171
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:23 pm

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby tuned » Sat May 18, 2019 9:02 am

Consolidation is what's destroyed the business. Period. Why is the programming cookie cutter, boring and less creative? Because with consolidation the corporate owners can get away with it. Competition for advertisers and listeners was massively reduced allowing them to increase spot loads, get rid of high priced talent and add more voice tracking and still retain listeners. Listeners have no choice but to consume this watered down product. Not only is the product terrible but a diversity of opinion has been replaced by non-stop corporate propaganda. The deep pocketed corporate giants can squash any local competitor that might challenge them by temporarily lowering their local ad rates to drive them out of business. That's how companies like Rogers bought up local station groups in the Fraser Valley. Sell to us or we will put you out of business. If ownership limits were in place that wouldn't have happened.
User avatar
tuned
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 1207
Joined: Tue May 02, 2006 5:06 pm

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby paterson » Mon May 20, 2019 7:42 pm

Well we have a bit of a gap here tuned because I am of the opinion that radio is not destroyed at all. So because of this I have concerns with some of the arguments and statements made.

As I mentioned, radio seems to be doing better financially than the print or television businesses in Canada. New stations are still being licensed every year and how many do you actually hear go out of business? A few mostly AM but not many. Canada has more over the air radio stations than ever before. Yes there are things about consolidation that I don't really like either. Having said that, where I live, I can think of three local stations that sound better and seem to be doing better financially under corporate ownership than when they were independent.

One of the first things that the new owners did was update studios and facilities with new equipment and bring these stations into the 21st century. Corporate stations squashing the little guy with low rates? Other than the bottom feeders, most advertisers that use radio don't really care that much about low rates. They do care about results, and return on investment. If the ads work, they will pay higher rates. Low rates and poor or no results, wasting your money.

In terms of voice tracking and shows without a host, I was working at a smaller station in 1984 that would do this on a somewhat regular basis in evening after 6pm and the all night show was always without a host. I also remember in 1978 in a medium market doing a 12 hour airshift occasionally. That's right 12 hours. Eight hours live and four hours voice tracked. The company that I worked for at the time had two radio stations and two television stations. Yes this is much more the norm now but it also was happening back in the day too.

My beef with radio, particularly music radio stations is the actual presentation style, and general laziness of programming. Today many stations have an over reliance on technology, repetitive music, on air talent with little personality that seems unfocused on the audience and community, and there is a general lack of surveillance material. Many FM music stations even in smaller markets have virtually no news which I think is a mistake. Is all of this the fault of consolidation? In some cases yes, in many cases no.

Lack of diversity of opinion? Talk radio today is better and there is much more of it than 30 or 40 years ago. Where I live, off air one talk station could be classified as right of centre, another centre/right, two in the middle and one centre/left. Decades ago this was not the case, true stations had talk shows, but all talk, all news radio was rare.

Loss of jobs because of consolidation? Absolutely correct and absolutely not a good thing. But, many job losses have also been caused by technology. And sadly stations whether corporate or not, now have a fraction of the number of employees that they had 30 years ago. In this respect radio is similar to just about every other business or industry.
paterson
Advanced Member
 
Posts: 171
Joined: Fri Jun 03, 2016 6:23 pm

Re: Shaw sells Corus

Postby Tenax » Tue Jun 18, 2019 5:35 pm

Regarding the comment in the previous post about cookie cutter and lazy programming....I was on the website of the last station I programmed and saw spelling errors and a major contest that had I'm guessing a sister station"s name rather than the correct one on it. Are things that bad now? is the attention to detail that far gone? recycled announcers, lack of mentoring, people winning awards and you think is that the best example they can honor? I wish I could have had the choice to hang on 3 or 4 more years. But I wouldn't want to be in the business for anything anymore, the way things are. I can only listen to am news radio for weather bulletins these days. Music stations? Nope. Too depressing.
Tenax
Member
 
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Nov 11, 2013 8:50 am


Return to General Radio News

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests