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Sinclair Broadcast to buy Las Vegas NBC station for $120 million

Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc. has agreed to acquire NBC affiliate KSNV in Las Vegas for $120 million, the Hunt Valley-based broadcaster said Wednesday.

The purchase from Intermountain West is expected to close in the first quarter of 2015.

The addition of KSNV to a Sinclair-owned CW station and MyNetwork station in Las Vegas means the broadcaster's news footprint will cover all major cities in Nevada, said Steve Pruett, co-COO of Sinclair's television group.

The company plans to sell the Federal Communications Commission license and related assets, but not the programming, of one of the three Las Vegas properties to comply with regulatory requirements.

By continuing to run the programming of one station and multicasting it through one of the two other stations, "this would effectively give [Sinclair] programming from all three networks (NBC, CW and MyNetwork) on two stations," said Marci Ryvicker, a senior analyst for Wells Fargo Securities, in a research note.

Sinclair "is gaining a Big-4 affiliation in Las Vegas while still keeping programming for its other two networks, which sounds like a great deal at a great price," Ryvicker said. "We think [Sinclair] is finding ways to improve and strengthen its portfolio through a better mix of stations."

Lorraine.mirabella@baltsun.com

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