The Gannett-Belo merger is complete: Gannett Co. has officially acquired Belo Corp. for $13.75 per share in cash, plus $715 million of outstanding debt, for a total of $2.2 billion.
“We are thrilled to combine these two storied media companies, both of which are known for award-winning journalism, operational excellence and strong brand leadership,” Gannett CEO Gracia Martore said in a statement. “The completion of this transaction marks a significant milestone in Gannett’s ongoing transformation into a higher-margin and more highly diversified company in the rapidly evolving media business.”
Earlier today, Gannett announced it would sell three stations — KMOV in St. Louis and KTVK-KSAW in Phoenix — to Meredith Corp. for $407.5 million. The sale of KMOV was required by the Department of Justice before the Gannett-Belo deal could close.
The acquisition of Belo’s 20 stations nearly doubles Gannett’s broadcast portfolio, bringing the company’s reach to approximately one-third of all television households in America. Gannett becomes the #1 CBS affiliate group as well as expanding its already #1 NBC affiliate group.
As of today, Belo will no longer be listed on the NYSE.