Citadel. It’s the tale of the bean counter that couldn’t count his own beans. There are reasons why proficient number twos make terrible number ones. Number twos believe in cutting and firing their way to a victory they never achieve.
That’s why other radio chains utilizing the equivalent philosophies will be condemned to same fate.
Are they even worth writing about when we already know the end of the story?
Its business plan was to buy up smaller market stations and sell them to greater fools for more than they paid for them. One problem. They paid some hefty multiples to acquire these stations.
There was that moment in time when they should’ve sold while the greater fools were still buying- but exit strategy disagreements ensued - and Next Media ended up holding on to yesterday.
Lending institutions continue to hold on to their bad assets and allow those that got them into this jam to continue running their empty shell companies.
What was that quote from Citadel’s CEO and architect of doom Farid Suleman?
“Business will continue as usual.”
I keep saying it over and over. I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried.
That means Citadel, and the other major radio chains, will continue to downsize and devalue their programming, promotion, and marketing. Instead of investing in content, they’ll pick up long-in-the-tooth Donnie Osmond or some other syndication off the bird. Live and local? Get real. The stink of human costs money. Promotion and marketing? That’s a needless and costly expense.
It wasn’t all that long ago, actually, that the only stations that carried nets and syndication in their most important dayparts were small market stations.
Maybe Farid was duped into believing that Donnie can host the 21st century version of Don McNeill's Breakfast Club.
I’ll bet Suleman truly believes that Citadel could survive as a content provider for news, sports, and programming.
It gets better. The other radio chains teetering on bankruptcy believe their eventual bankruptcies will be considered as a cost of doing business.
What about real broadcasters? They’re exercising great patience. Two words: Fire sale.