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Media General buying LIN Media, owner of Channel 4 in Buffalo

Media General announced today that it is buying LIN Media, owner of WIVB (Channel 4) and WNLO in Buffalo and 42 other television stations and seven digital channels in 23 U.S. markets, for $1.6 billion.

The deal values LIN at approximately $27.82 per share, a 28% premium to the 20-day average price.

Together, Media General and LIN Media will own and operate or service 74 stations across 46 markets, reaching approximately 26.5 million households, or 23%, of U.S. TV households.

The transaction has been unanimously approved by the Media General’s board and the LIN Media board. The transaction must be approved by shareholders, the Federal Communications Commission, and be cleared under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act.

The companies said they anticipate that station divestitures in certain markets will be required in order to address regulatory considerations. Media General and LIN Media will convene special shareholder meetings to vote on the transaction.