CHAMPAIGN – Champaign-based DWS Inc. has filed an application with the Federal Communications Commission to acquire the license for WUIL-FM in Arcola.
The station, which advertises itself as 107.9 JAMZ, is currently licensed to Champaign Partners LLC of Oklahoma City. John S. and Melanie W. Maguire are listed as the principals in Champaign Partners.
The application, accepted Monday by the FCC, was filed by Mike Haile, vice president of DWS Inc. That company is the licensee for WDWS-AM and WHMS-FM, both in Champaign.
Haile confirmed the application filing but had no other comment.
An asset purchase agreement filed with the application states that DWS Inc. has agreed to pay Champaign Partners LLC a purchase price of $1.4 million.
WUIL's tower is in northern Douglas County, just south of the Champaign County line. According to a map on the station's website, the primary "local" coverage area includes Douglas County and southern Champaign County, including parts of Champaign-Urbana.
The FCC application says WUIL is one of 23 full-power radio stations in the Champaign Arbitron market. In markets with 15 to 29 full-power radio stations, the FCC allows common control of six radio stations. With the acquisition, DWS Inc. would own three radio stations in the Champaign market.
All shares in DWS Inc. are owned by The News-Gazette Inc., which publishes this newspaper. In its application, DWS Inc. said the acquisition would comply with FCC cross-ownership rules because the predicted contour of WUIL's signal does not fully encompass Champaign.
Contacted Thursday, John Maguire, the managing partner for Champaign Partners, said he expects FCC consideration to take anywhere from 40 days to 90 days "worst case."
The deal with DWS Inc. was brokered by Gene Ferry & Co. Media Brokerage. According to the sale agreement, that company is to be paid $62,000 – $50,000 from the seller and $12,000 from the buyer.