Feb 22, 2022 - Economy

TV broadcaster Tegna sells in $5.4 billion cash deal

Photo Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Tegna, one of the largest U.S. local news broadcast companies, has sold to one of its largest shareholders, Standard General, in a $5.4 billion deal backed by private equity giant Apollo Global Management, the companies said Tuesday.

Why it matters: Consolidation in local media has accelerated in recent years as private investment firms look to squeeze profits out of local news companies whose businesses have been in terminal decline.

Details: Standard General and Apollo are buying Tegna at $24 per share in cash.

  • The companies said the deal has an equity value of about $5.4 billion and an enterprise value of about $8.6 billion.
  • Deb McDermott, who currently serves as CEO of Standard Media, a subsidiary of Standard General, will become CEO. Soo Kim, founding partner of Standard General, will serve as chairman of the company's new board.

Be smart: Private bidders have been circulating Tegna for some time. Byron Allen, the media mogul who owns The Weather Channel and other networks, reportedly raised $10 billion in preferred equity and debt in a bid for Tegna.

The big picture: Private investment firms have pushed to consolidate local titles, betting that they can squeeze more profits out of those entities before they die out.

  • Apollo, for example, acquired Cox Media Group in 2019. It had also reportedly eyed a bid for Nexstar, prior to its merger with Tribune in 2019.

What's next: The deal is expected to close in the second half of 2022 following regulatory approval.

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