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Emmis CEO spearheads takeover bid

Bloomberg News

A group led by Emmis Communications Corp. Chief Executive Jeffrey Smulyan offered to buy the owner of radio stations in New York and Los Angeles in a deal that values the company at about $90 million.

JS Acquisition Inc. and Alden Global Capital offered $2.40 a share for all of the Class A common stock of Indianapolis-based Emmis, according to a statement Monday. The offer is 10 cents, or 4.3%, higher than the April 23 closing price of $2.30.

Emmis owns KPWR-FM (105.9) in Los Angeles, which ranked No. 11 in the most recent Los Angeles-Orange County ratings.

If the purchase goes ahead, Smulyan will own all of a new class of voting common stock of Emmis and will control JS Acquisition, according to the statement. The acquisition is subject to approval by Emmis shareholders and regulators. Revenue at Emmis fell 23% to $188.6 million in the nine months ended Nov. 30, regulatory filings show.

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Emmis shares rose 8 cents, or 3.5%, to $2.38 on Monday. The shares have more than doubled this year.

Smulyan holds Class B shares that carry 10 votes each and give him 70% of the voting power, according to a proxy filing. In 2006, he dropped an offer to buy the company for $15.25 a share.


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