A closer look at the new DMA rankings (audio)


The Nielsen Company has released its DMA rankings for the 2011-2012 television season, as reported last week. But what does the DMA rank really mean for station revenues or potential sale value?

RBR-TVBR spoke with investment banker Michael Alcamo of MC Alcamo & Co. after he’d had some time to look over the DMA changes.

Alcamo was surprised to see Austin, TX, which had been a hot market in recent years, decline three positions to #47. “Maybe that’s just a cooling off of growth,” he suggested.

Las Vegas, however, was up two slots to #40, despite being one of the cities hardest hit when the housing bubble burst. That, Alcamo, suggested, could be due to growth of the Hispanic population.

Alcamo clip 1:

Some “Rust Belt” markets which had been on the decline finally seemed to be holding their own. Alcamo noted that Flint, MI was actually up one slot to #68 and Pittsburgh, after falling for one year to #24, rebounded to #23.

For potential buyers, a market’s DMA ranking trend is a factor to be considered in valuing a station, Alcamo noted.

Alcamo clip 2:

For example, he expects the stations that McGraw-Hill has on the market in San Diego (#28) and Bakersfield (#126) to command premium valuations because of their long-term growth trends, even though Bakersfield slipped one slot this time.