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Fox News, Clear Channel Sign Radio News Deal

Dec 6, 2004  •  Post A Comment

Fox News will be the primary national news source for more than 100 of Clear Channel Radio’s news/talk stations under a five-year deal that was announced Monday and that will start in 2005.

The deal gives Fox News Radio a competitive boost. Although not all of Clear Channel’s 170-plus news/talk stations (out of a total of some 1,200 stations) are affected, the announcement said that if all options are exercised, Fox, which currently lists nearly 300 affiliates, could find itself with 500 affiliates.

“This deal positions Fox News to become a significant player in the radio industry and is another example of our commitment to the medium,” said Fox News Chairman Roger Ailes.

In addition to becoming the Clear Channel stations’ primary provider of breaking national news 24/7, Fox News will utilize key talent from its stable and will provide five-minute newscasts at the top of the hour (including a 5 p.m. signature nightly newscast anchored by Laurie Dhue) around the clock.

Even if all of Clear Channel’s news/talk stations drop the news service provided ABC Radio (136 scheduled newscasts in each 24-hour cycle), many of the stations could be expected to continue to buy such ABC Radio-distributed personalities as Larry Elder, Paul Harvey and Sean Hannity. One source said that the news offerings from Fox News would be more compatible with such lineups than would many of the news services featuring ABC News personalities.