University of Texas Purchases KXBT For $6 Million
KXBT-FM was once part of Border Media Partners, before it went through a restructuring and Larry Patrick was appointed the trustee. Today Patrick announced that the university has agreed to purchase the Austin station for $6 million. Back in 2009, Border Media Partners had 29 stations which were taken over by its lenders. Most of the stations aired Spanish-language formats.
Here's what the university posted on its website about the sale:
"New programming will begin on KUTX 98.9 FM and KUT 90.5 FM sometime this fall, following Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approval. Differentiating KUT’s news and music services across two stations is consistent with our strategic plan to double impact by 2020 and contribute to the long-term public service and sustainability of KUT," said Stewart Vanderwilt, director and general manager of KUT Public Radio. "The new KUT Public Media Studios — with their increased production capacity, public spaces and direct audience interaction — are the foundation of this strategic direction."
KUTX 98.9 will feature a public radio-style music format with diverse playlists covering the broad spectrum of music that makes Austin a global music destination. Programming will include many of KUT's existing music programs along with interviews, in-studio performances, the music journalism program "Texas Music Matters" and local arts-related news and commentary. Additionally, the all-music station will provide a high-profile platform for promoting and sharing content from the new KUT Public Media Studios' Performance Studio 1A and the KUT-operated Cactus Cafe.
KUT 90.5 FM, NPR and Austin News from the Capital of Texas will continue to broadcast national news and information programming, including NPR's "Morning Edition" and "All Things Considered," "Fresh Air," "Wait, Wait … Don't Tell Me," "A Prairie Home Companion," and "This American Life," among other national and local programs. The new dedicated format will enable KUT to add additional national news programs and enable KUT's award-winning news team to provide a deeper level of context and a broader forum for the voices shaping Central Texas.
"Austin is one of only two state capitals in a major market without a full-time news and information public radio station," continued Vanderwilt. "Austin has all the demographic and social attributes — high levels of education, political engagement, civic participation and a strong sense of place — needed for a full-time public radio news station to thrive."
KUT and the University of Texas at Austin are purchasing the station from the Border Media Business Trust in a deal brokered by Public Radio Capital, an independent nonprofit organized to support the growth of public stations throughout the country, for $6 million. No tuition or taxpayer money will be used for the purchase.
KUTX 98.9 FM will provide roughly the same five-county metro-area coverage as KUT 90.5 FM.