Sinclair to acquire Tribune Media in billion-dollar deal

May 08, 2017 - 10:49 am

(CHICAGO) -- The largest owner of local TV stations in the United States will acquire Tribune Media in a multibillion-dollar deal.

Sinclair Broadcast Group announced Monday that it has agreed to buy Tribune for $43.50 per share, valuing the deal at $3.9 billion. The company will assume approximately $2.7 billion in net debt. Locally, Sinclair owns KEYE-TV, Austin's CBS affiliate.

Tribune owns or operates more than 40 television stations and the cable network WGN. It also holds minority stakes in Food Network and CareerBuilder. 

"Bringing Sinclair and Tribune Media together creates a powerhouse in local television broadcasting, with more than 200 local TV stations in 100 markets across the country, delivering roughly 200,000 hours of local news annually," Peter Kern, Tribune's interim CEO, said in a memo to staff.

Sinclair beat out Nexstar, which also owns local stations, in the auction process. The deal is subject for approval from Tribune's stockholders and the Federal Communications Commission. 

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