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PAX racks up N.M. sale

Co. owns 63 TV stations nationwide

NEW YORK — Getting a jumpstart on post-deregulatory broadcast station trading, upstart Spanish-lingo net TeleFutura has closed on its $20 million purchase of Paxson Communications’ TV station in Albuquerque, N.M.

TeleFutura is a wholly owned subsid of Spanish network giant Univision and currently reaches 75% of U.S. Hispanic households.

West Palm Beach, Fla.-based Paxson, which owns 63 full-power TV stations nationwide, is widely expected to become a ripe takeover prospect in the wake of FCC deregulation.

The Pax program network says it will replace the coverage with cable and satellite in the Albuquerque market.

Paxson chairman-CEO Lowell “Bud” Paxson said the company’s recent station transactions “have continued to demonstrate that we’re capitalizing on strong valuations for our television stations. With this sale of the Albuquerque station for a purchase price of $20 million, we’ve completed our liquidity plan and now have over $100 million of cash on hand.”

Univision’s pending acquisition of leading Spanish radio group Hispanic Broadcasting is still being scrutinized by the FCC.