Justice OK With Tegna-Midwest TV Deal

Merger gets clean bill of antitrust health
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The Justice Department said it has no problem with Tegna's proposed deal to buy Midwest Television's KFMB suite of TV and radio stations for $325 million.

That deal was on a list of proposed mergers that got early termination of its Hart Scott Rodino antitrust review.

That means neither Justice nor the Federal Trade Commission--they divvy up the reviews--saw any reason to block or condition the deal on antitrust grounds.

The FCC still has to sign off, but the Justice seal of approval is a good sign; the agencies usually coordinate reviews.

Tegna will get CBS affiliate KFMB-TV, digital multicast channel KFMB-D2 (CW), as well as radio stations KFMB-AM-FM.

Tegna will pay for the stations, subject to FCC approval, with a combination of cash and an existing credit facility. The company has said it expected the deal to close by the first quarter.

And the company may not be done buying. "[W]e will continue to evaluate additional investments and select transactions to build on our growth and success with a focus on creating shareholder value," said Tegna president David Lougee at the time of the deal announcement.

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