Newcap Radio

Newfoundland Capital Corporation Ltd., operating as Newcap Radio, was a Canadian radio broadcasting conglomerate based in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Founded by Harold R. Steele, the company owned 101 radio stations in Canada (making it the second-largest radio conglomerate in Canada behind Bell Media) particularly in Newfoundland and Labrador, and Alberta, as well as two television stations in Lloydminster.

Newfoundland Capital Corporation Ltd.
Newcap Radio
FateAcquired by Stingray Digital
FounderHarold R. Steele
DefunctOctober 26, 2018
HeadquartersHalifax, Nova Scotia
Key people
Harold R. Steele (chairman)
Robert G. Steele (president and CEO)
ServicesRadio broadcasting, television broadcasting, hospitality
Number of employees


The company dates back to 1980. The group's Newfoundland and Labrador division, known as Steele Communications, included all but two of the full-power commercial stations in that province. In the past, Newfoundland Capital acted as a conglomerate with interests in diverse industries such as newspapers and freight transportation. The firm owns one asset unrelated to the broadcasting industry: a hotel in Corner Brook, the Glynmill Inn, which is operated as part of the Steele Hotels group which includes other properties held directly by the Steele family. The Steele family also has private holdings in other industries which are entirely outside of the Newcap corporate umbrella.

In 1986, NCCL received CRTC approval to acquire its first radio station, CHTN in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, from Northumberland Broadcasting Ltd. By 2008, Newcap would own over 70 radio stations, and flipped many radio stations from the AM band to the FM band.

In July 2008, Newcap announced a deal to trade CFDR in Halifax to Rogers Media in exchange for CIGM in Sudbury. Both stations were the sole remaining AM stations in their respective markets, and in both cases the current owner already had the maximum permitted number of FM stations in the applicable market, whereas the acquirer only had a single FM station. Both companies successfully applied to move the stations to FM as part of the trade. Newcap flipped CIGM Sudbury to FM on August 25, 2009, and Rogers flipped CFDR Halifax to FM on August 7, 2009.[1]

On July 28, 2008, Newcap Inc. announced that it had a tentative deal to acquire 12 stations in Ontario from Haliburton Broadcasting Group, subject to CRTC approval, for $18.95 million.[2] The company's application to acquire the Haliburton stations was formally published by the CRTC on November 13, 2008,[3] but was subsequently withdrawn in January 2009.[4] Newcap Inc. CEO Rob Steele indicated that in light of the credit market crisis, the company did not feel that it was the right time to increase its debt load.[5]

In May 2011, Newcap announced that it was selling its two stations in Winnipeg, CKJS and CHNK-FM, to Evanov Communications;[6] the sale was approved on October 24, 2011.[7]

In January 2013, the company announced it was exploring a possible sale of its remaining broadcasting assets in western Canada, consisting of 32 radio stations and two television stations, and six rebroadcasters associated with those stations. These stations are predominantly in Alberta (including several stations in the Lloydminster region on the Alberta/Saskatchewan border), except for two stations in British Columbia. The company announced in May 2013 it was no longer planning to sell its assets in Western Canada.[8] If such a sale had occurred, Newcap suggested that the proceeds might be used to either fund acquisitions "closer to [Newcap's] base in Atlantic Canada", pay down debt, or return capital to shareholders.[9]

On August 26, 2013, Newcap Radio announced it would acquire five former Astral Media radio stations in Toronto and Vancouver, CHBM-FM, CFXJ-FM, CKZZ-FM, CHHR-FM and CISL for $112 million. The deal was made in the wake of Bell Media's acquisition of the company.[10] The deal was approved by the CRTC on March 19, 2014 and the sale closed on March 31, 2014.[11][12]

On April 25, 2017, Rogers Media announced its intent to acquire CISL from Newcap, with plans to turn it into a sports talk station and flagship of the Vancouver Canucks.[13]

On May 11, 2017, Newcap Radio announced its purchase of NL Broadcasting in Kamloops and its three stations, CHNL, CKRV-FM, and CJKC-FM.[14]

On May 2, 2018, cable radio broadcaster Stingray Digital announced its intent to acquire Newcap Radio for $506 million.[15] On October 23, 2018, the CRTC approved Stingray's application to acquire Newcap.[16] The sale was completed just days later on October 26, 2018, with the Steele family holding the largest stake in the company besides its founders.[17][18]


The following list is based on the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission's media ownership charts as of January 26, 2013.[19]



Newfoundland and Labrador

Nova Scotia

Prince Edward Island

New Brunswick



British Columbia

3937844 Canada Inc.

The numbered company 3937844 Canada Inc., a partnership between Newcap and Standard Broadcasting, was the licensee for most of the Alberta stations listed above from 2002, when Standard acquired the stations from Telemedia, until 2007, when Newcap bought out Standard's share of the stations.


  1. "Local country station will be converted to FM", Northern Life, July 24, 2008.
  2. Newcap signs agreement to acquire 12 radio licences in Ontario, The Nova Scotia Business Journal, July 28, 2008.
  3. Broadcasting Notice of Public Hearing CRTC 2008-14
  4. Broadcasting Notice of Public Hearing CRTC 2008-14-7
  5. "Credit markets squelch $19M Newfoundland Capital radio purchase in Ontario", Canadian Press, January 19, 2009.
  6. Newfoundland Capital press release, via Canadian Newswire: "NEWCAP to Sell Winnipeg Radio Stations", May 19, 2010. Archived May 28, 2011, at the Wayback Machine
  7. Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2011-661
  8. "Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited no longer exploring the sale of Alberta Broadcasting Division". 3 May 2013. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  9. Newfoundland Capital Corporation Ltd. (press release) (2013-01-22). "Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited Exploring the Sale of Alberta Broadcasting Division". Retrieved 2013-01-22.
  10. "Newcap signs agreement with Bell Media to acquire five radio stations in Toronto and Vancouver". CNW. Retrieved 26 August 2013.
  11. Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2014-129
  12. "Newcap Radio receives CRTC approval to purchase stations in Toronto and Vancouver". Canada Newswire. March 19, 2014. Retrieved March 20, 2014.
  13. "Sportsnet launching all-sports radio station in Vancouver". The Province. Postmedia. Retrieved 25 April 2017.
  14. Fortems, Cam. "Kamloops' NL Broadcasting sold to Nova Scotia broadcast corporation". Kamloops This Week. Retrieved 2018-05-07.
  15. "Stingray Digital pushes into radio with $506-million purchase of Newfoundland Capital". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 2018-05-06.
  16. Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2018-404, Various radio and television broadcasting undertakings – Change in ownership and effective control, CRTC, October 23, 2018
  17. "CRTC Approves $506-Million Sale of Newcap Radio to Stingray". VOCM. Retrieved 2018-10-31.
  18. "CRTC Approves $506-Million Sale of Newcap Radio to Stingray". VOCM. Retrieved 2018-10-31.
  19. "CRTC chart of Newcap Inc.'s assets" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-10-06. Retrieved 2013-01-27.
  20. Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2008-326 Archived 2008-12-20 at the Wayback Machine
  21. Broadcasting Decision CRTC 2014-108, CILR-FM Lloydminster - Revocation of licence, CRTC, March 10, 2014
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