Clear Channel's Q1 rises

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Clear Channel Communications posted a first-quarter profit that soared past last year's results, courtesy of some asset sales, though the company offered little in the way of an update on a pending $19 billion deal to be taken private.

The radio giant earned $799.6 million in the quarter, up from $102.2 million. But after adjusting for one-time gains like the $1 billion sale of the TV station group and the sale of some radio stations, Clear Channel earned just $94.2 million.

Revenue rose 4% to $1.56 billion, though most of the growth was because of foreign exchange rates.

"We continued to outdeliver the majority of our media industry peers," CEO Mark Mays said.

Clear Channel agreed eight months ago to be acquired by a group of private investors, led by Thomas H. Lee Partners and Bain Capital Partners, for $39.20 a share. The stock closed Friday, though, at $30, suggesting Wall Street's skepticism that the deal will close.

In fact, Clear Channel and its would-be acquirers filed a lawsuit last month against the six banks that were supposed to help finance the deal, accusing them of trying to back out of their commitments. A trial is set for June 2.

"The company is unable to estimate a closing date and is not certain that a closing will occur," Clear Channel said Friday. (partialdiff)
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