Founded in 1972 by Lowry Mays and Red McCombs, media conglomerate Clear Channel Communications is the parent company of various broadcasting and business-related subsidiaries. The company is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas where it bought its first FM in 1972.
When Congress relaxed radio ownership rules in the early 90’s with new duopoly guidelines and, a few years later, passed the Telecommunications Act of 1996, station ownership was further deregulated enabling broadcasters to own more stations than ever before. Clear Channel took advantage of the new law perhaps more-so than anyone else and went on a buying frenzy, purchasing more than 70 other media companies and individual stations.
Today (2007), over 1,100 radio stations, ten XM satellite radio channels and more than 40 TV stations are owned by Clear Channel. The company also owns outright or has an interest in various state news and sports networks (including The Florida News Network and the University of Florida’s Gator Radio Network), Premiere Radio Networks, Fox Sports Radio Network, Clear Channel Traffic (for traffic and road conditions reports across the country), and publishes “Inside Radio” magazine. It also maintains an outdoor advertising arm and, until 2005, Clear Channel Entertainment, a producer of live events, which was spun off into a new company, Live Nation, based in Beverly Hills, California.
As of June 2007, Clear Channel’s Greater Tampa Bay stations (including Bradenton, Sarasota and Venice): WBTP-FM, WDAE-AM, WFLA-AM, WFLZ-FM, WHNZ-AM, WMTX-FM, WTBT-FM, WXTB-FM, WCTQ-FM, WDDV-AM, WFUS-FM, WSDV-AM, WSRZ-FM, and WTZB-FM.
Orlando area Clear Channel stations: WFLF-AM, WJRR-FM, WMGF-FM, WQTM-AM, WRUM-FM, WTKS-FM, and WXXL-FM.
1972 - 2007 Other Tampa Bay Area Stations (History)