Amidst a wave of cord cutting, the Sinclair broadcasting company is taking a different approach to growing revenue by venturing into other industries.
Sinclair President and CEO Chris Ripley said he is looking into other avenues beyond broadcast TV, and is aiming to invest in them through a billion-dollar private equity fund. The company hopes to branch out into two to four new industries outside of broadcast over the next five years, he said in an interview with the Baltimore Sun that published on Monday.
“Our core business and our legacy might be in media and broadcasting, but at the end of the day, we’re looking to make Sinclair a success in any industry that it’s in,” Ripley said. “If there are better investment opportunities in other industries, then we should pursue those rather than just blindly saying we’re a broadcaster, and that is all we’re going to do.”
Sinclair is the nation’s second-largest owner of television stations and is still investing $65 million this year in that division, including NextGen TV. However, Ripley said, “As we looked at our business, it became increasingly clear that from a regulatory perspective, broadcasting is not in a good position” and looks to make investments with a private equity group in areas like senior care, like nursing homes, retirement communities, and assisted living.
“We know that demand for nursing homes is going to be going up because of the population’s aging,” said Ripley. “Now we’re going in, and we’re identifying specific industries… that would benefit from that megatrend.”
The company is also looking into investing in pet care services such as doggy daycare and insurance, as well as businesses that focus on decarbonization, such as geothermal, alternate energy plans, and recycling.
In June, Sinclair Inc. became the holding company of Sinclair Broadcasting Group, which includes Sinclair Television Group and Diamond, the latter of which has sued its parent for financial mismanagement and alleged fraud. The company has been selling off minority investments and will redistribute $316 million to private equity, real estate, and other potentially profitable endeavors.
Sinclair was not immediately available for comment.