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Despite sluggish growth, Hollander's comments that Viacom intends to stay in the business seemed to discount talk from company executives that Infinity would be put on the block after the exit of not only Stern, but Viacom COO Mel Karmazin to Sirius.
WITH INFINITY TO BEYOND
Infinity President/COO Joel Hollander Outlines Life After Stern at Radio Chain
There is life after Howard Stern for Infinity Broadcasting.

The nation’s second-largest radio chain is preparing for the exit of the popular show jock, who plans to leave terrestrial radio when his contract is up in Dec. 2005 for Sirius Satellite Radio.

Infinity President/COO Joel Hollander says the company is committed to its radio holdings, but will "redeploy its assets to focus on the Top 20 markets."

He made the remarks while speaking at the UBS 32nd Annual Media Week Conference in NYC.Hollander revealed that 80% of Infinity's revenue and cash flow currently come from Top 20 markets, and is looking to expand its presence in markets such as Miami, Atlanta, San Diego, Minneapolis and Houston.

Questioners are questioning if this means the company will divest all of its stations in markets below the Top 20. Of its total of 184 stations, more than 100 are outside the Top 20.

It also immediately raises the issue of how this will affect the landscape of ABC, Cox, Radio One, Salem, Jefferson Pilot, Beasley and Susquehanna, not to mention Clear Channel, who all have strong presences in those markets, and what kind of timeline is in place.

Despite sluggish growth, Hollander's comments that Viacom intends to stay in the business seemed to discount talk from company executives that Infinity would be put on the block after the exit of not only Stern, but Viacom COO Mel Karmazin to Sirius.

Viacom recently invested around $14 million in eight company-owned stations.

"They're going to give us the ammunition to get the best content, the best personalities, and the best music," added Hollander.

More to come.

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