The owner of KAYU FOX 28 in Spokane said it has been negotiating in good faith with the operators of DISH to get that station and 17 others back on the satellite television provider.
That’s the take of Cox Media Group in Atlanta. The company became the owner of FOX 28 last year when private equity funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management Inc. acquired FOX 28, other Northwest Broadcasting assets and Cox Enterprises assets.
FOX 28 was among the stations removed from the DISH lineup over the weekend because of a dispute over retransmission fees with Cox Media Group.
Cox Media Group, not Apollo, is leading the talks, and has made multiple offers with “reasonable” terms, but DISH has declined to respond with a “serious” proposal, according to a news release from Cox Media Group.
“DISH is notoriously greedy, unreasonable and difficult to deal with in retransmission consent negotiations,” said Kim Guthrie, CEO of Cox Media, in the news release. “DISH is trying to under pay for our award-winning programming so it can boost its own profits. Despite all of its bluster, I doubt that DISH customers will ever see any savings for them.”
DISH disagrees and has indicated that Apollo is demanding nearly double the fees DISH pays to provide customers access to the former Northwest Broadcasting channels.
FOX 28 is still available through a number of other venues such as DirecTV, Sparklight (formerly CableOne), Spectrum, Comcast and Rodeo Networks.
FOX 28 is not the only entity with operations in the region that has a tie to Apollo Global Management.
St. Joseph Regional Medical Center in Lewiston is owned by LifePoint Health in Tennessee and LifePoint is owned by certain funds of Apollo Global Management.
Last week, St. Joe’s stopped being in the network of Regence BlueShield of Idaho. The two entities haven’t been able to reach a compromise about how much St. Joe’s charges Regence for the services more than 15,000 Regence customers in the region receive at the hospital or from physicians, nurse practitioners and other professionals on its staff.
That impasse means that Regence customers will generally pay more if they continue to get medical care at St. Joe’s.
Emergency care will still be billed by Regence as in-network, but St. Joe’s can balance bill Regence customers for the difference between what it costs St. Joe’s to provide the care and how much Regence allows for certain services.
Elaine Williams may be contacted at email@example.com or (208) 848-2261.