Comcast (CMCSA) is close to taking NBC off General Electric’s hands, the New York Times reports. An official announcement is possible this week.
If the deal closes, Comcast will own 51% of the company, GE will own 49%, with the ability to sell its stake in the next few years. The deal’s main problem now is getting Vivendi, who owns 20% of NBC to agree to a valuation of NBC so GE can buy the stake and sell it to Comcast.
Once the deal is announced it could take another 12-18 months to complete, reports Broadcast & Cable, who also throws out this this interesting morsel:
The dealing, however, may not be done. One Wall Street player confirmed market rumours that bankers have already descended on the MSO’s Philadelphia headquarters to work with management on selling the NBC Network and stations to a third party. Comcast had no immediate comment on that still-hypothetical possibility.
If Comcast could figure out how to shed the less desirable network stations, and just hold onto the profitable cable units, it would be a better deal for Comcast.