Former Disney and News Corp. lobbyist Preston Padden is fronting a new organization for TV station owners interested in participating in the Federal Communications Commission's efforts to buy broadcast spectrum that it can auction off to wireless companies.
So far, few broadcasters have publicly expressed a desire to sell either some or all of their spectrum. The FCC wants the spectrum because it fears there is a shortage looming given the explosion of mobile devices, especially in big cities. The spectrum has been valued at $25 billion and the potential cut for TV stations is $1.75 billion.
Many broadcasters have said there is no such shortage but the industry has agreed to take part in a voluntary spectrum auction.
The organization, dubbed the "Expanding Opportunities for Broadcasters Coalition," said its founding members "include television broadcast stations that under the right conditions, would like to participate in the auction." Padden declined to say which broadcasters he is working with, citing the confidentiality requirements of the FCC's auction process.