Broadcast station merger and acquisition activity slowed to $8.77 billion in 2014 from a record $12.4 billion in 2013, according to figures from SNL Kagan.
The 2014 deal total includes $1.3 billion in station swaps. The biggest swaps involved 21st Century Fox’s four station trade with Cox Enterprises, worth an estimated $859 million, and a 19 station radio swap between CBS and Beasley Broadcast Group worth about $300 million.
Kagan said the decline in deals reflected a slowdown of industry consolidation resulting from moves from the FCC.
TV deal volume was $7.26 billion, down from $11.39 billion in 2013. Kagan said 145 full-power TV stations changed hands, compared to 286 in 2013.
The average price of a full-power station was $49.1 million, up from $38.9 million in 2013. The cash-flow multiple for TV stations in those deals remained relatively stable at 8.1 times, compared to 8.2 times a year ago.
Radio deals rose 48% to $1.51 billion, Kagan said, with 258 AM stations and 501 FM stations sold in 2014. In 2013, 219 AM stations and 418 FM stations changed hands.