FCC OKs Univision’s USA Acquisition

LOS ANGELES — Univision Communications Inc. received Federal Communications Commission approval to acquire USA Networks Inc.’s television-station group for $1.1 billion in cash.

The deal is expected to close this quarter, subject to other closing conditions. The Federal Trade Commission signed off on the acquisition earlier this month.

Under the deal announced in December, Spanish-language broadcaster Univision (UVN) will buy USA’s (USAI) 13 full-power stations and minority interests in four more stations. Univision plans to use the stations as part of a second Spanish-language network, slated to begin in January.

While the transaction won’t greatly increase Univision’s geographical reach — the only new cities are Atlanta and Philadelphia — it will give the broadcaster even more clout in seven of the eight top Hispanic markets. They include Los Angeles, New York, Miami and Chicago, which account for nearly 40% of the U.S. Latino population.

The 2000 Census showed there are nearly 35 million Hispanics in the U.S., a figure which nearly equals the nation’s black population.

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