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Scripps will sell its Milwaukee radio stations to Wisconsin-based Good Karma Brands

Posted at 9:14 AM, Jul 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-27 18:59:17-04

MILWAUKEE -- Big changes were announced Friday at our building on 720 East Capitol Drive. Radio stations WTMJ and WKTI are being sold by E.W. Scripps to a local company. 

The buyer is Good Karma Brands, a small company of 125 employees. Once approved the purchase will increase their staff by 50-percent. Both radio stations think that's a good thing. 

"When stations like this are available in your hometown, in your industry, it's certainly at least worth making a call," said Good Karma Brands Founder and CEO Craig Karmazin.  

That call turn into a major deal for Karmazin. 

"When you think about Wisconsin and you think about radio, this is the best in class." 

Good Karma Brands has been based in Wisconsin for more than twenty years in the radio and digital media industry. Karmazin said its main focus has been sports media. Until Friday, the company was most well known for owning ESPN Milwaukee and Madison. 

"To find a buyer, a local, Wisconsin buyer for these great radio stations is just a tremendous positive for our group," said Radio Vice President Steve Wexler.  

Throughout Wexler's long tenure with WTMJ, this is just the second change in ownership he's been through. For nearly 90 years the flagship station was owned by the Milwaukee Journal. It was sold to E.W. Scripps just a few years ago. E.W. Scripps announced back in January it would sell all 34 of its radio stations including WTMJ and WKTI. 

"People will realize that what was so attractive to Good Karma Brands about WTMJ and WKTI, was the tremendous local service and local information and local news we've been providing," Wexler said. 

The Federal Radio Commission still has to approve the sale. Karmazin said that's expected to happen some time before the end of the year. Good Karma Brands says both radio stations will be staying right where they are.

E.W. Scripps Company is also the parent company of TODAY'S TMJ4.