Cox Enterprises, which owns broadcaster Cox Media Group has announced the exploration of strategic options for the ownership status of the 14 broadcast television stations in its stable.
Those fourteen stations have been part of either ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, and independent affiliates in nine different states and markets that have included Atlanta, Seattle, Boston, Orlando, Charlotte, and Tulsa. Cox has launched this exploration to see if it can partner with a larger network or bundle them all into a separate company.
Cox Media Group, which has specialized in broadcasting, publishing and digital media, has a reach of over 31 million Americans in their respective markets. The company said that it had no immediate plans for the other parts of the portfolio, and looked to continue operating its radio properties as well as print publications such as The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Dayton Daily News and their affiliated publications and websites, and other businesses in adtech and consulting.
Alex Taylor, president and chief executive of Cox Enterprises, said in a statement: "We didn't take this decision lightly. It is clear that scale is critical for TV affiliates to be positioned well for the future. Our stations are some of the best in the industry and we want them to stay that way.”
Cox Enterprises chairman Jim Kennedy added: "Cox's television stations are and will always be an important part of our company's history, and we greatly value the contributions of these stations to the success of our company and to the communities where we do business. We are deeply appreciative of the employees at these stations and their dedication to delivering quality, consistent and trustworthy journalism."
Cox most recently was included in a partnership with fellow broadcasters Charter Communications and Comcast, to assemble an advanced TV pipeline to reach a vast majority of American households.