Earlier in the month, Screen Rant reported that the Comcast-NBC Universal merger had cleared its last major hurdle when both the FCC and the US Department of Justice approved the deal. Now, the deal is officially done with Comcast announcing the completed merger via a press release on Saturday.
As is typical with press releases, both Comcast and GE (which still retains 49% of NBC Universal in the new deal) were enthusiastic in praising the merger.
In the release, Comcast chairman and Chief Executive Officer Brian L. Roberts said, “This transaction brings together the rich traditions of some of the world’s most well known and respected entertainment, news and sports brands at NBC Universal with the technology and consumer reach of Comcast, creating the ideal entertainment and distribution company."
Together, Comcast and NBC Universal make quite a media powerhouse. Between them, the companies hold a variety of rich assets including broadcast TV stations, cable television channels, theme parks, a widely used Internet broadband service, and much more. According to a CNET report, the newly merged company is valued at a whopping $37 billion.
Given the sheer size of the new media conglomerate, it's no wonder competitors were up in arms when plans for the deal were first announced over a year ago. As we explained in our previous report, however, the FCC drafted specific rules that forbid Comcast from withholding NBC programming from its cable and satellite competitors. If you're a competing cable company, the FCC's ruling didn't quite take the sting out of seeing a giant new media company strutting around, but it did provide a bit of security for your business.
In related news, Comcast's Chief Operating Officer Steve Burke has resigned from his position to become the new CEO of NBC Universal. Burke had originally planned to take on the CEO role, while maintaining his position as COO, but recently changed his mind.