Marketwatch reports the US Department of Justice — Antitrust Division has denied Sinclair Broadcast Group’s purchase of WTVR-TV in Richmond, VA.
A consent decree between Justice and Raycom Media is the cause of the the denial. The consent decree was a condition for Raycom to acquire three stations from Lincoln Financial. It states that Justice could “reject unilaterally” any buyer of WTVR, without cause.
In June, Sinclair agreed to purchase WTVR from Raycom for $85 million and sell the license of WRLH to Carma Broadcasting (a company affiliated with Sinclair). Sinclair would then provide sales and non-programming services to WRLH-TV.
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Sinclair feels that the purchase would not have violated antitrust laws. The station group is exploring its rights regarding the asset purchase agreement with Raycom.
Sinclair owns local ABC affiliate KDNL.
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