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Hedge Fund Making Power Play for Venerable Fisher Communications, the Seattle-Based Company That’s Been In Broadcasting Since 1926

Feb 9, 2011  •  Post A Comment

"For the second time in less than three years, Fisher Communications is being pushed toward a sale by the same dissident shareholder. The move by New York-based FrontFour Capital Group, a hedge fund manager, comes after Fisher’s board — also for the second time in less than three years — rejected an unsolicited bid."

So writes Price Colman at TVNewsCheck.

The summary for the article says, "The Seattle-based owner of 13 full-power and seven low-power TVs as well as a major Seattle office building rejected an unsolicited bid from [Canadian real estate firm Huntingdon REIT], but the bid still has the backing of hedge fund and board dissident FrontFour.The fate of the company and its broadcast stations may rest with Mario Gabelli, Fisher’s biggest institutional investor."

Colman writes, "this time, the hostile takeover attempt may have a chance. Huntingdon is bidding $211 million for Seattle-based Fisher…The group includes two ABC affiliates, including flagship KOMO Seattle (DMA 13); eight CBS affiliates; and three Univision affiliates. Fisher also owns eight radio stations."

The article adds, "Because foreign entities are precluded from owning any more than 24.9% of a U.S. broadcaster, Huntingdon would have to sell or otherwise spin off most of the broadcast assets if it took control of Fisher."

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