Gray Expects $11 Million From Retrans in ’09

Agreements now cover 3.3 million cable subscribers

Gray Television (NYSE: GTN) has been hammering out retransmission deals left and right as the year closes. The Atlanta broadcast group announced that it has reached agreements “in principle” with 27 cable operators comprising 3.3 million subscribers. Particulars are still being hammered out, the company said.

The deals on deck plus previous ones completed with EchoStar and Cox Cable are expected to generate $11 million in revenue next year, compared to $3 million in retrans revenue for 2008.

“Completed agreements with numerous small cable operators will further increase the expected total incremental cash retransmission consent revenue for 2009,” a GTN statement read.

Gray has 36 TV stations in 30 markets. It was trading for around 38 cents mid-day Tuesday after news of the retrans deals gave it a temporary two-penny boost.

The company has under delist watch on the New York Stock Exchange since early November because of its flagging share price. A repurchase later in the month was not sufficient to boost the price back above $1, where it needs to be to remain on the Exchange.