By COLLIN GALLANT on January 12, 2024.
Medicine Hat’s Christian radio station will soon have a new owner.
UCB Media – United Christian Broadcaster Media – will take over operations of Praise 93.7-FM in the Hat on Feb. 3, making it the second Alberta station in its network of 13 across Canada.
“We are so excited to bring our energy and passion in serving Medicine Hat,” said UCB CEO James Hunt in a statement to the News. “This community has embraced Praise FM over the past decades, and we are dedicated to building this relationship.
“UCB’s commitment to bring all that Christian Radio is, beyond just the music we love, will be a shift for 93.7 that listeners are sure to rally behind.”
UCB, a registered charity, has been in operation for 20 years and runs donor-supported radio frequency stations in Fort McMurray, mid-sized communities in Ontario, including Belleville, Kingston and ThunderBay, as well as Regina.
The transaction comes after former owner Vista Media, which acquired CJLT in the early 2010s, applied in 2017 to change the format from contemporary faith-based programming to commercial alternative rock, but was denied,
The Canadian Radio and Telecommunications Commission approval of the transfer, issued in early December, states Vista was operating the station at a loss among its 49-station national network.
About 700 signatures in support were recorded with UCB’s application to the CRTC. The purchase price for UCB is $20,000, but the assumed value for CRTC purposes is $185,000.
The station’s licence and requirements to program non-classical religious music is next set for renewal in 2027.