The future of WEEU 830 AM could rest in the hands local business man Hamid Chaudhry.
"I can't imagine Berks County without WEEU," Chaudhry told WFMZ-TV Thursday. "It has a strong base. It just needs somebody with a little bit of a vision who can change things."
If an operator doesn't buy WEEU's FCC license, the station could shut down once the Reading Eagle Company closes its sale to MediaNews Group. The Reading Eagle Company, which owns the radio station, the Reading Eagle newspaper, and South Schuylkill News, filed for bankruptcy protection in March.
Chaudhry said he's in talks to buy the radio station and keep the "Voice of Berks County" alive.
WEEU has been on the air for 87-years.
David Kline, who has managed the station for 30-years, said that as of Friday morning there were 30 inquiries about purchasing WEEU.
Of those 30, he told The Reading Eagle, 26 could be described as local business people, and two are regional. The remaining two could be classified as national chains, he said.
It is still unclear if and when a sale of WEEU could happen and what a sale would look like. Kline said the ownership is working on a clear direction regarding how the sale should be handled.
But knowing the station is wanted and could have a bright future feels good, Kline said. Although, he added, it's not surprising. "This is a mission. It's not a job, it's a cause, it's a purpose," he said. "And the purpose is to inform people and to entertain people. And the purpose is to get people through hard times.
"The outpouring from the public speaks volumes about what we've achieved."
There have been times throughout his career when Kline has heard people tell him that AM radio is dead, he said. It would die at the hands of FM or satellite or digital.
"Guess what? I don't buy it," he said. "We never rolled over. We kept our oars in the water pulling straight ahead."
Kline said he firmly believes there is a path forward for WEEU. Even if a sale can't be arranged before the Reading Eagle Company sale goes final, he said he thinks there are ways around letting the station go dark. Like, for example, leasing the tower and other equipment from MediaNews Group until a permanent fix can be found.
|WEEU 830 AM (20 Kw-D, 6 Kw-N) Daytime 2 mV/m contour|
"They didn't help make me who I am, they made me who I am," he said Friday.
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