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Nexstar closes purchase of KUSI-TV in San Diego

Nexstar Media Group has finalized its purchase of a San Diego independent station, which will serve as the future home of the CW Network in that market.

In May, Nexstar announced it was acquiring KUSI-TV (Channel 41) from McKinnon Broadcasting Company for $35 million, a move that would see McKinnon exit the broadcast television industry completely, as KUSI was its sole TV asset.

“KUSI’s established local news operations serving viewers and advertisers across the San Diego community is a perfect fit with our station group and existing San Diego operations at KSWB,” Tom Carter, the president and chief operating officer at Nexstar, said in a statement at the time the deal was announced. “Their mission of serving the community by delivering the most local news in the market is consistent with Nexstar’s commitment to providing consumers expansive local content on linear and digital platforms.”

The deal closed on the same day Nexstar moved its CW Network programming to nine new television stations across the country after Paramount Global decided it would drop the CW from eight of its owned-and-operated stations in Atlanta, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, Sacramento and several other areas.

Independent of the Paramount shift, Nexstar also decided to change the CW Network affiliate in Oklahoma City, moving the CW to an independent station in that market that it co-owns with NBC affiliate KFOR-TV (Channel 4).

Despite Nexstar’s acquisition of KUSI, TV viewers in San Diego won’t have to change the dial to see CW Network shows just yet. An existing agreement with TEGNA will keep the CW on a digital sub-channel of KFMB (Channel 8, CBS) for a few more weeks, but the affiliation is expected to change to KUSI by the end of the year.

What will change is KUSI’s news programming, which will be produced by its new sister-station KSWB (Channel 69, Fox). Scott Heath, the vice president and general manager at KSWB, will also serve in the same role at KUSI.

“We are very excited to be bringing KUSI together with KSWB, Nexstar’s other owned-and-operated television station in the market,” Heath said in a statement. “Collectively, these stations will offer more local news and information programming in the market than all the other local stations combined and provide unprecedented coverage of breaking news, weather, and sports. In addition, by working together with KUSI, we will be able to provide our advertisers and marketing clients with even more opportunities to reach consumers across our combined linear and digital platforms.”

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About the Author:

Matthew Keys

Matthew Keys is the publisher of The Desk and reports on the business and policy matters involving the broadcast television, streaming video and radio industries. He previously worked for Thomson Reuters, Disney-ABC, Tribune Broadcasting and McNaughton Newspapers. Matthew is based in Northern California, has won numerous awards in the field of journalism, and is a member of IRE (Investigative Reporters and Editors).