[03/01/06 - 12:00 AM]
The CW Announces Five New Exclusive Long-Term Affiliation Agreements

[via press release from The CW]




The CW announced today that it has signed exclusive, long-term affiliation agreements with stations in Cleveland, Orlando, Charlotte, Louisville and South Bend. The combination of these five newly signed affiliates, plus the previously announced affiliation agreements with Tribune Broadcasting's 16 major market WB stations and CBS Corporation's 11 UPN major market affiliates, brings America's fifth broadcast network's national coverage to almost 52% of the country, including 18 of the Top 20 markets and 25 of the Top 30.

The newly signed affiliates are:

* WBNX-TV Cleveland, OH, owned by Winston Broadcasting Network.

* WKCF-TV Orlando, FL, owned by EMMIS Communications.

* WJZY-TV Charlotte, NC, owned by Capitol Broadcasting Company, Inc.

* WBKI-TV Louisville, KY, owned by Cascade Broadcasting Group, LLC.

* WMWB-TV South Bend, IN, owned by Weigel Broadcasting Company.

These stations are in the 16th, 20th, 27th, 50th and 87th largest markets in the country, respectively, and represent 4.32% of total U.S. TV households. WBNX-Cleveland, WKCF-Orlando, WBKI-Louisville and WMWB-South Bend are currently affiliated with The WB; WJZY-Charlotte is currently affiliated with UPN.

"We are thrilled to announce these five long-term affiliation agreements with these leading broadcasting companies," said John Maatta, Chief Operating Officer, The CW. "They are the first independently-owned stations to join The CW, and they represent the first wave of new affiliations, with many more to come in the weeks ahead. These groups represent tremendous local station success stories, a blend of WB and UPN affiliates whose ratings and station value has increased tremendously due to their network affiliation over the past decade."

"Each of our new partners recognizes the enormous value of our new network, which will bring audiences and advertisers proven, popular programming that will be supported by superlative, multi-media marketing efforts -- all under the auspices of two of the most accomplished media companies in the world," continued Maatta. "We've been impressed and gratified by the strong response from advertisers, suppliers in the creative community and potential affiliates in the five weeks since we announced The CW's formation. These newly signed long-term affiliation deals reflect the excitement and enthusiasm we all share about the launch and growth of our new highly-competitive fifth network and the value it will bring to all of our constituents."

On January 24, CBS Corporation and Warner Bros. Entertainment announced their intent to form a new fifth network, The CW, to be launched in the fall of 2006. The new broadcasting network will be a joint venture between Warner Bros. Entertainment and CBS Corporation, with each company owning 50%.

In an important strategic move that secures major market distribution for The CW, it was also announced on January 24th that Tribune Broadcasting and the CBS Corporation's UPN affiliates have agreed separately to sign 10-year affiliation agreements with the new network. The combination of Tribune's 16 major market stations (New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Dallas, Washington, D.C., Houston, Miami, Denver, St. Louis, Portland, Indianapolis, San Diego, Hartford, New Orleans and Albany) and the 11 CBS-owned UPN major market affiliates (Philadelphia, San Francisco, Atlanta, Detroit, Tampa, Seattle, Sacramento, Pittsburgh, West Palm Beach, Norfolk and Providence) cover the top 13 television markets, 20 of the top 25 television markets and have a total coverage area of more than 47% of the country.

The remainder of the network's distribution system will be a combination of selected current UPN and The WB stations. The full distribution of the new network is expected to exceed 95% of the country.

The CW will incorporate The WB's current scheduling model, which consists of a 6 night-13 hour primetime lineup including Monday through Friday nights from 8-10PM (EST/PST); Sundays from 7-10PM (EST/PST); Sunday from 5-7PM (EST/PST) outside of primetime as well as a Monday thru Friday afternoon block from 3-5PM (EST/PST) and a 5-hour Saturday morning animation block. Together, the network will program 30 hours a week over seven days for its affiliated stations.

CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS.A and CBS) is a mass media company with constituent parts that reach back to the beginnings of the broadcast industry, as well as newer businesses that operate on the leading edge of the media industry. The Company, through its many and varied operations, combines broad reach with well-positioned local businesses, all of which provide it with an extensive distribution network by which it serves audiences and advertisers in all 50 states and key international markets. It has operations in virtually every field of media and entertainment, including broadcast television (CBS and UPN), cable television (Showtime and CSTV Networks), local television (CBS Television Stations), television production and syndication (CBS Paramount Television and King World), radio (CBS Radio), advertising on out-of-home media (CBS Outdoor), publishing (Simon & Schuster), theme parks (Paramount Parks), digital media (CBS Digital Media Group and CSTV Networks) and consumer products (CBS Consumer Products).

Warner Bros. Entertainment, a fully-integrated, broad-based entertainment company, is a global leader in the creation, production, distribution, licensing and marketing of all forms of entertainment and their related businesses. Warner Bros. Entertainment, a Time Warner Company, stands at the forefront of every aspect of the entertainment industry, from feature films to television, home video/DVD, animation, comic books, interactive entertainment and games, product and brand licensing, international cinemas and broadcasting.

  [march 2006]  

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