American Public Media Group Sets New Direction for Classical Music Service in South Florida

Radio Stations in Miami, West Palm Beach and Naples
to be sold 
to Educational Media Foundation

Contact: Angie Andresen

ST. PAUL, Minn., July 14, 2015 – Recognizing that media consumption and audience choices are rapidly changing, and that efforts to build a sustainable classical music radio service in South Florida have not succeeded, American Public Media Group (APMG) announced today that it will move its classical music service in South Florida from FM radio to its national on-demand service, This new direction includes the sale of its Classical South Florida (CSF) network of stations — WKCP-FM in Miami (classical music), WPBI-FM in West Palm Beach (classical music and news), and WNPS-FM in Naples (classical music) — to Educational Media Foundation (EMF), a not-for-profit organization that operates non-commercial radio stations.

WKCP is owned by American Public Media Group, while WPBI and WNPS are owned by Classical South Florida, an APMG subsidiary. APMG and CSF will transfer ownership of the stations to EMF, upon approval by the Federal Communications Commission. EMF will begin broadcasting contemporary Christian programming on these stations this week.

“We are proud of the classical music service we’ve provided to hundreds of thousands of South Floridians on FM radio,” said Jon McTaggart, president and CEO of APMG. “As audience expectations and needs have changed, along with changes in media technology and the music economy, it’s clear we must change the ways we deliver and sustain our services. We’ve been working to build Classical South Florida since 2007, and we’ve not succeeded in providing the distinctive value that motivates a sustainable level of support. APMG produces and presents world-class classical music for millions of Americans, every week, and we must constantly adapt to ensure that more people can access our public services on-the-air, online and on stage.”

Although APMG had not been actively looking to sell its CSF stations, APMG received an unsolicited offer to purchase the CSF network and accepted that offer following the approval of both the APMG and CSF boards of trustees.

“We are deeply grateful to every member, donor, volunteer and sponsor who has supported CSF for nearly eight years,” McTaggart said. “We will continue to serve classical music audiences, across Florida and across the country, in new and sustainable ways for many more years to come.”

American Public Media Group:

American Public Media Group is the largest station-based public radio organization in America, combining multi-regional station operations, national programming creation and distribution, and innovative digital/social/mobile services in one organization. With a portfolio that includes A Prairie Home Companion®, BBC World Service, Marketplace®, and the leading classical music programming in the nation, American Public Media (APM) is one the largest producers and distributors of public radio programming in the world. Supported financially by contributions from individual donors, sponsors, philanthropic foundations and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), APMG’s regional operations include Minnesota Public Radio and Southern California Public Radio