|Fate||Acquired by Clear Channel Communications & reorganized into iHeartMedia|
Zell Chillmark (1992-1996)
Jacor Communications was a media corporation which owned a large number of radio stations in the United States. Inside the radio industry, Jacor was seen as one of the most competitive broadcast companies in history. Jacor's re-image in 1996 created the slogan "The Noise You Can't Ignore".
Jacor was named after its founder Terry Jacobs. Jacobs started the group with small religious stations. From 1987 to 1992, it was owned by Terry Jacobs. From 1992-1999, Jacor was owned by Sam Zell's Zell Chillmark fund. In 1999, Zell sold Jacor to Clear Channel Communications, now iHeartMedia.
In 1992 Jacor was one of the first broadcasters to take advantage of duopoly rules allowing stations to own or operate 2AMs and 2FMs per market. Up until that time broadcasters could only own 1AM and 1FM per market. One of the first duopoly acquisitions was WKRC Radio in Cincinnati. From 1992-1994 WKRC operated as WLWA, a female version of male driven WLW. In February 1996, with the passing of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, Jacor went on a radio shopping spree.
Jacor acquired Noble Broadcasting days after the telecom bill was passed, 10 days later Jacor merged with Citicasters. In 1997 Jacor acquired the assets of Nationwide Communications. These acquisitions made Jacor the third-largest radio company when it was acquired by Clear Channel for 4.4 billion dollars in 1999. When bought out by Clear Channel, Jacor owned 230 radio stations in 55 markets. Jacor also owned Premiere Radio networks, producers of The Rush Limbaugh Show and the Dr. Laura Schlessinger show. Jacor also owned WKRC-TV in Cincinnati.
Jacor was owned (1992-1999) by Sam Zell's Zell Chillmark fund. In May 1993 founder and CEO Terry Jacobs left Jacor and VP Programming and COO Randy Michaels was named President of the company, in 1996 he was promoted to CEO. In 1999 Zell decided to exit radio and his interest in Jacor. A bidding war between CBS Radio and Clear Channel Communications began with Clear Channel prevailing with a $4.4 billion price. Clear Channel named Michaels CEO and enjoyed several years of continued growth and success reaching 1,200 domestic radio properties. Michaels is now CEO of Merlin Media LLC, and Clear Channel has been sold to a group of private equity investors.
The Jacor name is retired from broadcasting; in 2010, the stations that were still owned by Clear Channel that had "Jacor" as the licensee name took on the "Citicasters" licensee name. For many years in the late 1980s and throughout the 1990s Jacor's perception in the radio industry was well regarded among radio listeners and broadcasting peers. In most markets where Jacor competed they had the top-rated station; in the case of Denver, Cincinnati, and Tampa were often ranked first and second with their AM/FM combos. In the 1990s Jacor's first entry into a major market was Gannett's KIIS-AM-FM in Los Angeles. Jacor quickly improved ratings at KIIS-FM and turned the AM (now KEIB) from a 5,000-watt unknown to a successful sports station that for several years was the flagship station for Los Angeles Dodgers baseball games.
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