Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Report: Entercom, CBS Radio Meet To Hammer Out Merger

What will Entercom’s management structure look like after the company closes its mega-merger with CBS Radio? The answer may become clearer following two days of pivotal meetings that sources say are taking place this week in Chicago.

InsideRadio reports details of the pow-wow with managers from both companies are sketchy. According to sources the discussions will include post-merger reorganization plans. And this week’s get-together in Chicago may be part of a series of meetings with managers in preparation for the merger, sources say, which is on track to close in the second half of the year.

Entercome CEO David Field has called Entercom’s pending $1.7 billion takeover of CBS Radio “transformational” and “game changing.” The deal will mushroom Entercom’s footprint to 244 stations in 47 markets—including all of the top 10, all but two of the top 25 and most of the top 50. Field is hoping to clear regulatory hurdles, including a second request for information from the Department of Justice, and close the blockbuster deal in the third quarter.

Between now and then the company will need to determine how to structure the expanded company to ensure a smooth transition and efficient operation. Likewise Entercom and CBS Radio brass need to get down to the specifics of how they will save millions of dollars in cost synergies. Entercom told investors during an early February conference call after the deal was announced to expect at least $25 million in annual cost synergies within 12-18 months after the deal closes. The company did not say how many of those will come in the form of job cuts. Field said most of those cuts would come at the corporate level and that the $25 million was a “conservative” estimate.

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