Television broadcast company TEGNA — which owns San Diego-based KFMB-TV (CBS8) — agreed Tuesday to sell to private equity firms Standard General and Apollo for $24 per share.
According to a TEGNA statement, the transaction has an enterprise value of around $8.6 billion, including the assumption of debt.
“We are pleased to have reached this agreement with Standard General, which follows a thorough review of acquisition proposals received by the company,” said Howard Elias, chairman of the TEGNA board, which approved the deal unanimously. “After evaluating this opportunity against TEGNA’s standalone prospects and other strategic alternatives, our board concluded that this transaction maximizes value for TEGNA shareholders.”
TEGNA owns 64 stations in 51 markets and will become the nation’s “largest minority-owned, woman-led broadcast group,” pending completion of the sale, officials said. The transaction is subject to approval by TEGNA shareholders, regulatory approvals, and other customary closing conditions, and is expected to close in the second half of 2022.
“As long-term investors in the television broadcasting industry, we have a deep admiration for TEGNA and the stations it operates and, in particular, for TEGNA’s talented employees and their commitment to serving their communities,” said Soo Kim, founding partner of Standard General. “We believe TEGNA has a strong foundation and exciting prospects for continued growth as a result of the stewardship of the board and the current management team.”
If the sale goes through, Deb McDermott will become CEO and Kim will serve as chairman of a new board.
McDermott is CEO of Standard Media and has more than 20 years of experience leading broadcast groups, including previously serving as COO of Media General and as CEO and president of Young Broadcasting.
“TEGNA’s stations have earned excellent reputations as leading local content providers, and TEGNA’s digital and content assets are a key part of its future in an evolving media landscape,” McDermott said. “These achievements are a credit to the hard work of TEGNA’s dedicated employees, who are the company’s most valuable asset. I’m very excited about what the future holds for TEGNA.”
Upon completion of the transaction, TEGNA will become a private company and its shares will no longer be traded on the New York Stock Exchange.
Updated at 4:31 p.m. February 22, 2022
— City News Service, Inc.