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BUSINESS
March 20, 2013 | By Bob Fernandez, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
It's final. Comcast Corp. closed Tuesday on its $16.7-billion purchase of the 49 percent of NBCUniversal it didn't already own. The cable giant announced the deal in February and it did not need federal government approvals, which had been obtained when Comcast purchased the first 51 percent of NBCUniversal in early 2011. "We are excited the transaction has closed and look forward to taking full advantage of the opportunities for growth and innovation at our combined company," Comcast said.
NEWS
February 15, 2013 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
Comcast Corp. could have run NBCUniversal in a joint venture with General Electric until 2018. But acting now to buy the remaining 49 percent of the news and entertainment conglomerate, investment analysts say, means that Comcast does not risk having to pay more for it later. Because Comcast has directly operated the company for two years, the deal signals confidence that the cable giant can restore rundown NBCUniversal to health, the analysts say. On Wednesday, Jessica Reif Cohen of Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Matthew Harrigan of Wunderlich Securities called the deal a "steal.
NEWS
February 14, 2013 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
Comcast Corp., flush with billions of dollars from sales of assets and bonds, rapidly accelerated its acquisition of NBCUniversal on Tuesday, saying it would pay $16.7 billion for the 49 percent of the entertainment, news and film conglomerate that it doesn't already own. The Philadelphia cable giant expects the deal to close within the next six weeks. The seller is General Electric Co., which sold Comcast 51 percent of NBCUniversal in 2011. Comcast and GE were expected to operate NBCUniversal as a joint venture until at least mid-2014, and Comcast could have continued the joint venture through 2018.
BUSINESS
February 5, 2013
NBCUniversal head Steve Burke announced on Monday that the entertainment company hired the former CEO of Univision, Joe Uva, to head its Hispanic franchise, including Telemundo. Also, Bonnie Hammer has been promoted to head all cable channels and Lauren Zalaznick will direct innovation, monetization and emerging technology at NBCUniversal. All three will report to Burke. "More than ever, we need to simplify our organization and take advantage of the breadth of our assets," Burke said in an memo.
BUSINESS
September 28, 2012 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
With celebrities tweeting and viewers sharing Facebook "likes" for TV shows, Comcast Corp. and NBCUniversal will announce today that they will invest in the British social-TV start-up zeebox and help launch its app in the United States. It's a huge boost for zeebox, as it enters the U.S. market on the nation's largest cable system. Zeebox aggregates TV show information, Twitter feeds, and other data for smartphones, tablets, and laptops. Using the zeebox app, TV viewers can toggle their attention between a live show and its real-time social-media buzz on a "second screen.
NEWS
August 17, 2012 | By David Sell and John Timpane, Inquirer Staff Writers
For NBCUniversal, the Olympic Games brought the thrill of breaking even - and the shutting up of the naysayers. As the dust of the track settles, and the stats and data shake out, NBC's coverage of the world's biggest sporting event, on network TV, cable, and the Web, looks good enough to earn a medal. Despite programming glitches, confusion over venues and schedules, and #nbcfail (see below), London 2012 is a win for Comcast Corp., the Philadelphia-based majority owner of NBCUniversal.
NEWS
July 11, 2012 | By Bob Fernandez, Inquirer Staff Writer
The hit cable show Pawn Stars tracks the real-life dealings of a Las Vegas pawnshop and has helped transform A&E Television Networks L.L.C. into one of the nation's hottest TV programmers. Comcast Corp. was close to capitalizing on that surging popularity Monday night with a deal to sell its 15.8 percent share in A&E for slightly more than $3 billion, according to sources with knowledge of the deal. The deal could be announced as early as Tuesday. The buyers are Comcast's current partners in A&E, the Walt Disney Co. and Hearst Corp., which will retain 50-50 ownership stakes in A&E. The price tag for Comcast's 15.8 percent share gives A&E a total value of $18 billion to $19 billion.
BUSINESS
July 11, 2012 | By Bob Fernandez and Inquirer Staff Writer
Comcast Corp. disclosed in a regulatory filing on Tuesday that it reached an agreement to sell a 15.8 stake in A&E Television Networks L.L.C., the creator of cable-TV hits Pawn Stars, American Pickers and Storage Wars, for $3.025 million in cash. The Inquirer reported on the deal's final negotiations Tuesday. The buyers were Comcast's partners in A&E, the Walt Disney Co. and Hearst Co. The two companies now control A&E in a 50-50 venture. Comcast and A&E declined to comment.
NEWS
July 11, 2012 | By Bob Fernandez, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Comcast Corp. said Tuesday that it sold its 15.8 percent stake in A&E Television Networks L.L.C. for $3.025 billion in cash. The purchaser was A&E and enables Walt Disney Co. and Hearst Corp. to share 50-50 ownership in the TV programmer, whose hit shows include Pawn Stars, Storage Wars and American Pickers . Comcast acquired its stake in A&E through NBCUniversal, which it controls in a joint venture with General Electric. The $3 billion will remain with NBCUniversal, which can use it for business purposes.
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