Young to Deal Rockford Stick

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Mission Broadcasting Inc. will pay $20.75 million for Young Broadcasting Inc.'s WTVO, an ABC affiliate in Rockford, Ill.

The price is a whopping 20 times cash flow, which Young Broadcasting Chairman Vincent Young was happy to characterize as "demonstrating the value of television stations with strong local programming."

As with all license transfers, the sale is subject to FCC approval. When the deal is done, Young will own 10 TV's and Mission 15.

Young Broadcasting says it will use the proceeds for ongoing TV operations. Young is currently carrying $643 million in debt, primarily related to its $825 million purchase of KRON-TV. Interest on that debt for the first six months of the year was $32.8 million.

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