iHeartTowers

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iHeartMedia has closed the first part of their deal with Vertical Bridge, selling off 367 tower sites. The companies announced the deal on December 11, 2014, reporting that iHeartMedia would sell 411 tower assets to Vertical Bridge for up to $400 million. There’s no timetable for when the remaining 44 towers will be transferred. In a regulatory filing, iHeartMedia indacted those additional sites will be transferred when “defects are cured.” However, the initial deal required Vertical Bridge to buy 85% of the 411 towers, or 349 sites, which has now been met. But iHeartMedia’s COO/CFO Rich Bressler told investors to expect multiple closings as Vertical Bridge completes its due diligence across more than 150 markets nationwide. “This is a great example of how we continue to optimize our balance sheet and maximize liquidity — and how we continually review our entire portfolio of assets to ensure we operate them in the most efficient way possible and invest our resources in the highest return opportunities,” said Bressler said in December. Nothing will change for iHeartMedia’s listeners or employees as they have a 15-year lease agreement to keep their stations on the towers for $20.8 million a year. After that, Vertical Bridge will give the company the option to remain on the towers for three additional five-year contracts.

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