Affiliations Shift Among Arkansas Stations Following Sinclair Deal


Affiliations Shift Among Arkansas Stations Following Sinclair Deal

Sinclair Broadcast Group, which owns KATV in Little Rock, reached a deal a couple of weeks ago to acquire Tribune Media Co., owner of KFSM in Fort Smith, for close to $4 billion. Barring regulatory challenges, the combined company will own KATV, an ABC affiliate, KFSM, which is affiliated with CBS, and WREG in Memphis, another CBS station.

“Great news!,” said KATV News Director Nick Genty, who looks forward to a news “pipeline across the state.”

KTHV stands to lose out on the deal, which will add 42 TV stations to Sinclair’s 173. Channel 11, a CBS affiliate, seems unlikely to continue getting content from KFSM when it is owned by a competitor.

Some liberal viewers are concerned about a different pipeline — a flow of mandatory segments from Sinclair’s corporate office outside Baltimore, which critics see as partisan and conservative. But Genty was unconcerned about meddling. “No fears at all,” he wrote in an email.