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Meredith Corp. has agreed to sell its local TV stations, which are housed in its Local Media Group, to Gray Television for a revised $2.825 billion instead of the originally set $2.7 billion price tag a rival offer from an unnamed party.
“Meredith received an unsolicited proposal from another party after announcing the definitive agreement with Gray and subsequently received the revised Gray proposal,” the company said Thursday. “Meredith Corporation shareholders would receive $16.99 per share in cash, revised from the previously announced $14.51 per share in cash.”
The company’s national media division includes its publishing unit, which produces such magazine titles as People, Entertainment Weekly and Better Homes & Gardens. Its local TV business includes 17 TV stations reaching 11 percent of U.S. households and 30 million viewers.
The transaction is still expected to close in the fourth quarter.
The separation of TV and magazines at Meredith, led by chairman and CEO Tom Harty, continues a more than decade-long trend of media companies separating their print/publishing and television assets.
In 2013, Rupert Murdoch split his company News Corp. in two, separating its U.S. TV businesses into 21st Century Fox. In 2015, Gannett spun off its local TV business into Tegna, while keeping its legacy TV newspaper business. Likewise, in 2014 Tribune split its local TV and newspaper business into Tribune Publishing and Tribune Media.
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