KFUO-FM sale talks proceed

Reporter Sarah Bryan Miller has a lengthy story in today’s St. Louis Post-Dispatch with more details on the proposed sale of KFUO-FM, the LCMS station based in St. Louis. Here’s how the story begins:

Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod closer to selling KFUO-FM
ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH
08/16/2009

The board of directors of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod will debate selling radio station KFUO-FM when it meets this week, with the fate of classical music broadcasting in St. Louis hanging in the balance.

The leading candidate to buy KFUO (99.1 FM) appears to be Joy FM, a listener-supported Christian contemporary station. A sale to Joy would rebuff a group of local civic leaders who raised money to buy the station and keep it playing classical music.


Comments

KFUO-FM sale talks proceed — 19 Comments

  1. Sell them both. Radio is dead – it just hasn’t been buried yet.

    The value of radio licenses are dropping. The longer you wait, the less KFUO AM & FM will be worth to anyone. Wait too long and they will be worthless.

    And more people are reached over the internet than the airwaves. Radio is cost ineffective.

    Sell the radio licenses and switch to an internet-only distribution model.

    On second thought, just sell the licenses and be done with it. Pirate Christian Radio will fill the void just fine.

  2. American Evangelicals may take over a Lutheran owned radio station. This makes perfect sense in light of the current state of the LCMS. Maybe if we can get the JOY people to buy the talk side of KFUO over on the AM dial, Issues, Etc. will regain its rightful place at AM 850 on the dial.

  3. Sell it to “Joy FM”, of course! They will further the aims of the “new missouri” better than anything it could program itself.

  4. Sorry about the hopes for a continued “classical” station but that would mean Bach at least some of the time. Bach, sadly for him, was Lutheran and a good composer. 🙁

  5. I don’t get KFUO in NE Ohio. I only listen to AM talk radio, and that not very often. Classical music lovers in STL can get their music in other ways – and they know it. The BOD is acting wisely in getting rid of an asset while it still has some value. It may be virtually worthless in coming years.

  6. It isn’t if, it’s when.

    There aren’t any more designated gifts left to borrow from LCMS World Relief and from Missions. It’s either sell Classic 99, or sell or mortgage something else (the IC, a seminary, a university, etc).

    The LCMS BOD knows this.

    TW

  7. I have a Question is LCMSWorld Relief the same As LCMS Human Care ?And is the one fund Synod has borrowed from? Wondering!

  8. Does anybody know who the blonde lady was, interviewed on St. Louis’s Channel 4’s Tuesday 10 pm news about KFUO? She looked famliar but I tuned in too late to see her name on the screen. Kthxbai! 😉

  9. Some of us saw the news on CH2 at 10:00 p.m. and it was Chas Jaco that interviewed the woman. I amy not be right but I thot her name was Shirley Miller.

    What I would like to answer is BUT IT IS MY BUSINESS. This is the same reason any number of LCMS are not supporting the Synod…..Ever since the secret monetary facts have not been revealed concerning KFUO A M & F M in regards to Issues Etc . this is one of the reasons I think more and more steam is going to be let go but GOOD.

  10. Some of us saw the news on CH2 at 10:00 p.m. and it was Chas Jaco that interviewed the woman. I amy not be right but I thot her name was Shirley Miller.

    What I would like to answer is BUT IT IS MY BUSINESS. This is the same reason any number of LCMS are not supporting the Synod…..Ever since the secret monetary facts have not been revealed concerning KFUO A M & F M in regards to Issues Etc . this is one of the reasons I think more and more steam is going to be let go but GOOD.

  11. #6 The BOD is acting wisely in getting rid of an asset while it still has some value. It may be virtually worthless in coming years.

    Maybe, if they would at least pay back “human care”. But it will go down the rat hole of consultants and posh resorts.

    There won’t be more designated funds to borrow, now that we see that even “designated funds” aren’t safe from the waste at the … (what was the latest, Charles?)… Mauve Mausoleum!
    Is even Kuchta compromised!?

  12. The woman in the Fox 2 segment is Sarah Bryan Miller, the music critic for the St. Louis – Post Dispatch.

    She’s written several pieces for the STPD and blogged at their site for several months against the impending sale of Classic 99. This isn’t objective journalism.

    The Fox 2 segment was disappointing. Its sources were entirely one-sided against the sale (sources oddly included the Director of Broadcast for KFUO, Dennis Stortz –who at LCMS Inc. authorized his on-camera appearance?).

    While I suspect that the LCMS BOD refused to comment, no mention at all was made in the segment that the BOD had been contacted for comment.

    Bottom line: The LCMS BOD needs to figure out why employees of LCMS Inc. are working with the St. Louis print and television media to undermine them, and the proposed sale of Classic 99.

    TW

  13. Perhaps the goal isn’t to undermine the BOD. Maybe the idea is to drive up the perceived value of the station in an attempt to secure a higher sale price.

  14. Anonymous,

    That’s quite a conspiracy theory.

    Circle of Friends and the St. Louis Arts community doesn’t want to pay more for Classic 99 –even if the LCMS BOD would sell it to them. The employees of KFUO certainly don’t want the signal sold. The LCMS BOD (who benefits from the best sale price possible) gains nothing from the negative media coverage of the proposed sale. In fact, just the publicity of their desire to sell drive the price lower.

    How does that work?

    Again, The LCMS BOD needs to figure out why employees of LCMS Inc. are working with the St. Louis print and television media to undermine them, and the proposed sale of Classic 99.

    TW

  15. Help me understand why it would be such a tragedy to sell it? If it is worth a lot, why not? Is it such a great evangelism tool? Maybe many people joining LCMS churches after listening to it?

    And why not sell to Joy? Isn’t a Christian station better than a secular one?

  16. For what it’s worth, here’s an interesting opinion stated in an article by a St. Louis media professional:

    “There is no way that a listener-supported Christian radio company can afford to pay the full market value of a 100kw signal in the 20th market.”

    (Here’s a link to the entire article on St. Media.net…..
    http://stlmediastuff.blogspot.com/search?q=kfuo-fm)

    This was my exact gut feeling a week ago when I learned that this, apparently small, christian, LISTENER SUPPORTED, radio entity was buying KFUO Fm for $18 million. It seems a stretch to believe they can pull this off. Anyway, we’ll see what God has in store for us. Whatever it is, we can REJOICE that HE is in the ‘control room’! Pun intended!! ha ha

  17. Ruthie,

    In my opinion, it is a good idea to sell Classic 99 –and now.

    Classic 99 cannot support itself with ad revenue, as a purely commercial enterprise. It hasn’t been able to do so for years. It depends on large subsidies from LCMS Inc. and the St. Louis arts community. There is no reason to believe that th

    With the price of terrestrial radio signals going down in general (not due to the recession, but due to fewer and fewer advertisers using that medium), now is the time to sell.

    LCMS Inc. is in serious financial trouble right now. There is a significant deficit, and no more ability to borrow from the designated gifts it had been using to make up the shortfall.

    Classic 99 was worth $25-35 million ten years ago. Now is will be lucky to fetch the $18 million they are talking about. The longer LCMS Inc. waits, the less they will be able to ask for the signal.

    TW

  18. #16 And why not sell to Joy? Isn’t a Christian station better than a secular one?

    NO WAY! I am a long devoted Classic 99 station fan. I will not have my station be replaced by a bunch of contemporary wackos! (I’m Christian but this is my favorite station.) It’s my only known way to listen to the Metropolitan broadcasts which inspire my own music very much and the rest of it is good quality music. If I wake up and hear guitars and drums and some guy hollering “You are All Mighty” over and over again on my station, I’m throwing out my radio!

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