Audacy Settles Unpaid Tax Claims With Philly Suburb


PHILADELPHIA — Audacy Inc. has signed off on a $1.4 million settlement with a neighboring Pennsylvania township to the City of Brotherly Love that concludes a lengthy dispute over charges the audio content creation and distribution company did not pay local and business taxes to the municipality.

As 2019 came to a close, the company formerly known as Entercom moved to Philadelphia, six miles away from its prior home in Bala Cynwyd — a longtime hub for local broadcast media.

However, a court filing made Friday by Audacy as part of its ongoing exit from debtor-in-possession status shows it was fighting against Lower Merion Township — made famous by the late basketball icon Kobe Bryant. The municipality sought some $11.7 million for taxes from Audacy for its previous Bala Cynwyd headquarters.

Specifically, the dispute focused on tax assessments from the township levied between 2012 and 2016 tied to subsidiaries of the company that it claimed were not based in Bala Cynwyd.

A settlement has now been reached, and it spells out that neither Lower Merion Township nor Audacy will admit any liability and all related litigations will be dismissed.

Legal representation for Audacy was provided by Porter Hedges in Houston and Latham & Watkins in Los Angeles, while Lower Merion’s legal interests are handled by Kathleen Thomas of Perkasie and Hoffman & Saweris from Houston.

As for the rest of the ongoing Chapter 11, a status conference is scheduled for June 20 in Houston. The reorganization received court approval in February but faces delays at the FCC due to concerns raised by Republican-backed objections regarding Soros Fund Management’s acquisition of $400 million in Audacy debt.

The broadcaster saw a modest Q1 increase in net revenues to $261.8 million from $259.6 million the previous year. While digital revenues climbed by 10%, radio revenues dipped by 2%.

Operating expenses were reduced to $262.2 million, down from $271.8 million, leading to a significantly reduced operating loss of $0.4 million, compared to a $12.2 million loss in Q1 2023. The net loss for the quarter was markedly lower at $1.85 million, down from $35.9 million in the prior year.

— With reporting by Cameron Coats in Troy, N.Y.