Hearings into BCE takeover of CTV announced for February

In a Broadcasting Notice of Consultation released yesterday, the CRTC has announced that it will hold hearings on the acquisition of CTV Globemedia by BCE Inc. beginning on February 8th, 2011.

The deal, which was announced in September, would see BCE Inc. acquire complete ownership of CTV which has an estimated value of $3.2 billion.

Bell currently owns a 15% equity position in CTV and, if the deal is approved by the federal regulator, will acquire the remaining 85% for $1.3 billion in equity value from The Woodbridge Company Limited, the Toronto-based holding company of the Thomson family; Ontario Teachers Pension Plan; and Torstar Corporation.

Read: Broadcasting Notice of Consultation CRTC 2010-926
http://crtc.gc.ca/eng/archive/2010/2010-926.htm

In addition to owning Canada’s largest private television network with 27 stations across the country, CTV operates 30 specialty channels, including TSN and RDS, the top English and French specialty channels; and 34 radio stations.

In its announcement, the commission says it may wish to discuss the potential impact on the market, and, examine various related ownership issues.

Interested parties my submit intervention and comments to the commission until January 11th, 2011.

Discuss in our Bell to acquire CTV discussion thread in Digital Home’s Canadian Television Industry forum.

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