Back in January, FTVLive FIRST told you that Nexstar was going to spin off Tribune’s WPIX after buying the station in a part of the $4 billion dollar deal.
Many wondered why Nexstar CEO Perry Sook would not want to have a station in the No. 1 market in the country?
Nexstar announced yesterday that they would be selling WPIX to Scripps when the deal closes.
The answer is, he does, but Nexstar needed to spin off station to bring themselves under the current ownership cap rules.
Nexstar and other broadcasters are trying to get the FCC to raise the ownership cap and if that happens, Nexstar could be buying the station back from Scripps.
Yesterday, in the Scripps-Howard official news release, there was language in the last line of the release that tips you off. It said, “Scripps has granted Nexstar the option to buy back WPIX in New York City. The option is exercisable from March 31, 2020, through the end of 2021.”
So, basically, Nexstar will have over a year and a half to buy WPIX back from Scripps if the FCC raises the cap.