Cumulus Media’s Citadel acquisition

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Cumulus Media’s Citadel acquisition

Post by genlock » Fri Apr 04, 2014 10:17 am

A prestigious radio industry analyst and author of Inside Music Media revealed on Thursday a stunning ratings nosedive across a broad array of formats for Cumulus Media’s Citadel acquisition.

In addition to its virtual implosion of its bedrock conservative AM talk stations, Cumulus’ dramatic decline in numbers is meaningful because the Citadel acquisition made the company highly leveraged with $2.23 billion of debt.

Since acquiring Citadel in September 2011, Cumulus’ ratings plunge has resulted in stunning losses of audience share for 39 of 42 major stations, including such flagships as:

WABC/NY down 44%
KABC/LA down 52%
WLS/CHI down 57%
KGO/SF down 58%
KSFO/SF down 38%
WBAP/DAL down 32%
WLS-FM/CHI (Classic Hits) down 45.9%
KLOS-FM/LA (Classic Rock) down 24.6%
WGVX-FM/MN (Sports) down 80.8%
WKDF-FM/Nashville (Country) down 45.2%
WDVD-FM/Detroit (Hot Adult Contemporary) down 38.3%
KBEE-FM/SLC (Hot Adult Contemporary) down 50%

As the data above reveals, the decline has been broad-based and steep in a host of genres that have previously been considered bulletproof, like Country and Sports. In addition, Cumulus’ ratings vortex has eviscerated its traditionally strong talk radio audience, which has been a stanchion of the grassroots conservative movement for over twenty years.

Jerry Del Colliano of Inside Music Media says Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey “has lost talent, fired what remained,” and “singlehandedly killed talk radio.”
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Re: Cumulus Media’s Citadel acquisition

Post by Jay Nunley » Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:33 am

There is a reason the company's name is pronounced "Cume You Less".

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Re: Cumulus Media’s Citadel acquisition

Post by AmpedNow » Sat Apr 19, 2014 5:30 pm

Maybe this is what happens when a small market company plays in the big leagues... But I honestly didn't think it would be this bad.

In large markets, it's harder to get away with paying crumbs to third tier talent and expecting ratings success. For example, whose bright idea was it to pipe in a show from Atlanta to DC in mornings for their Adult CHR station and not expect a ratings implosion?

In Talk, they've tried cutting ties with Premiere, but the only decent host they've signed is Michael Savage for afternoons. The fact is, Premiere still has most of the good talent locked up. They can't compete in most dayparts with the talent they have signed.

The only large market they've had decent success in is Houston, with KRBE.

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