Salisbury’s WBOC-TV to buy NBC affiliate WRDE

Draper Media and SagamoreHill of Salisbury Licenses announced Tuesday that they have entered into a purchase agreement for WRDE-LD, an NBC affiliate serving the Delmarva Peninsula as Coast TV.

“We’re looking forward to bringing more local news, weather and community information to viewers here on Delmarva,” said Molly Draper Russell, CEO of Draper Holdings Business Trust, parent company of Draper Media.

“Coast TV’s NBC lineup reinforces our commitment to serving the Delmarva Peninsula with the absolute best information, entertainment and sports programming available,” Draper said.

“Our family’s history of service through free over-the-air broadcasting goes back more than half a century. Along with my sister and brothers we are proud to carry on the legacy of our late father, and company founder, Thomas H. Draper, who was fond of saying we have a moral obligation to serve Delmarva.”

WRDE’s ownership said it was pleased that the Draper family could purchase their business.

“WBOC is unquestionably one of the great stations in America,” said Louis Wall, president of SagamoreHill Broadcasting Corp. “Tom Draper built what all true broadcasters strive for, a well-resourced television station that could stand up against the competition in a market of any size. The union of Coast TV with WBOC will serve the viewers of the Delmarva Peninsula better

than ever. We are delighted with this agreement and the prospects it holds for the station’s future.”

“I began my Delmarva broadcasting career at WBOC so, I am very pleased, and it seems fitting, that WRDE and I rejoin the WBOC family, said Bob Backman, president of WRDE-TV.

Draper Media, based in Salisbury, consists of WBOC-TV, FOX21, Telemundo Delmarva, Antenna TV, WBOC Digital, WBOC-FM, WAAI-FM, WTDK-FM, WCEM-FM and WCEM-AM with satellite offices in Cambridge, Dover and Milton.

The transfer of ownership is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2018 subject to approval by the Federal Communications Commission.

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