When Gannett Co. Inc. (NYSE: GCI), the largest U.S. newspaper chain, agreed to pay $1.5 billion in cash for television company Belo Corp. (NYSE: BLC) in June, the company made good on a promise to make broadcasting a bigger part of the business than newspapers. The transaction, slated to close at the end of 2013, illustrates the recent upswing in broadcasting M&A deals taking place across the M&A landscape.
Strategic buyers benefit the most, says Eric Greenberg of Paul Hastings LLP. "Because they have an existing asset it allows them to create synergy immediately upon acquisition of a station," he adds. "Private equity gets boxed out."