Clear Channel Accepts $26.7 Billion Buyout; Also Will Sell 448 Radio Stations, TV Group

Clear Channel Communications has accepted a buyout offer from a group led by Thomas Lee Partners and Bain Capital Partners in a deal the parties say is valued at approximately $26.7 billion.

The value of the sale includes the assumption or repayment of about $8 billion in net debt.

The company will also sell 448 of its 1,150 radio stations. Those to be sold are outside the top 100 markets. Clear Channel is selling its entire 42-station television group as well. Collectively, the company stated, these properties contributed less than 10 percent of the company's revenues last year.

Under the terms of the agreement, Clear Channel shareholders will receive $37.60 in cash for each share of Clear Channel common stock they hold.

The Clear Channel board approved the deal. The merger is subject to the approval of Clear Channel's shareholders and regulatory approval.

The Mays family will continue to run the company. John Connaughton, a managing director at Bain Capital, stated, "Clear Channel is an exceptional media franchise that is well-positioned to grow thanks to the solid foundation the Mays family has created. We look forward to partnering with Clear Channel as it continues to innovate in meeting the changing needs of the audiences and advertisers it serves."

Under the merger agreement, Clear Channel may solicit competing bids from third parties through Dec. 7, and may negotiate with parties that submit competing proposals by that time until Jan. 5, 2007.

(Radio World)