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Springfield company to buy West Plains radio stations

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Springfield-based Diamond Media LLC entered into an agreement with Leawood, Kan.-based Three Rivers Communications LLC to purchase West Plains radio stations KHOM-FM and KBMV-FM for an undisclosed price, effective Aug. 1.

Diamond Media was incorporated July 6 by President Arch Watson III and Vice President and General Manager Tom Ladd in order to purchase the two radio West Plains stations, Ladd said, noting the company might add more stations down the road.

"It's a good opportunity. We like the area," Ladd said. "We just thought it was a good market, good area to cover and it was something we really looked forward to getting done so we could hit the streets and get going."

Ladd has worked in the radio business for 26 years, most recently as station and operations manager for Meyer Communications in Springfield.

Watson, a commercial real estate agent for Sperry Van Ness Rankin Co. LLC, has a family connection with Ozarks media, and he wanted to get into the business himself, he said, noting his family has previously had ownership stakes in the Springfield News-Leader and KY3.

Ladd will work in West Plains, while Watson will continue to work out of Springfield. Diamond Media will keep the employees of the radio stations, but the programming will change. KHOM-FM, a country station, is being converted into a sports station, while KBMV-FM, a rock station, is being converted into a news talk station, Ladd said.

KHOM-FM already is an affiliate station for Kansas City Royals games. Three Rivers Communications owner Fred White works in public relations for the the team. Ladd said KHOM-FM has a contract through the current season and will renegotiate next season.[[In-content Ad]]

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