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Rupert Murdoch puts KTVI on selling block


New York, NY – Media mogul Rupert Murdoch said Wednesday he will sell nine of the 35 TV stations he owns in the U.S., including KTVI-Channel 2 in St. Louis.

The announcement comes as Murdoch's News Corporation tries to buy the company that owns the Wall Street Journal for $5 billion.

All nine of the TV stations being sold are Fox affilates, and they're all generally in the smallest markets where Murdoch owns stations.

The stations are also not in one of the nine cities in which the company owns two stations. Owning pairs of stations in the same city, also referred to as a duopoly, can save broadcasters money by combining back-office and technical operations.

News Corp. spokesman Andrew Butcher declined to provide revenues, cash flows or other financial metrics for the stations which would help provide a determination of the potential price they might fetch. He declined to elaborate on the planned sale.

News Corp. had $7.3 billion in cash as of the end of March, according to its most recent financial report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. News Corp. has offered to pay for Dow Jones either with cash or a combination of cash and securities.

Along with KTVI, the nine stations are WJW in Cleveland; KDVR in Denver; WDAF in Kansas City, Kan.; WITI in Milwaukee; KSTU in Salt Lake City; WBRC in Birmingham, Ala.; WHBQ in Memphis, Tenn.; and WGHP in Greensboro, N.C.

Last month The New York Times Co. completed the sale of its group of nine network-affiliated TV stations to the private equity firm Oak Hill Capital Partners for $575 million. Those stations were generally in smaller markets than those being sold by News Corp.

To see a list of the stations News Corp. currently owns, click here.