In a broadcasting decision handed down today, the CRTC has approved Cogeco’s $80 million acquisition of eleven Quebec radio stations held by Corus.

The deal was approved after Cogeco agreed to establish a news agency called Cogeco Nouvelles, which will provide local stations with talk-radio content, and to divest itself of three stations to avoid concentration of ownership.

"We are very happy with the CRTC's decision, and more confident than ever that it will be highly fruitful for the radio broadcasting system in Québec and diversity of voices in radio news." said Louis Audet, President and CEO of Cogeco Inc.

The stations sold by Corus to Cogeco include:
  • CJRC-FM 104.7 in Gatineau
  • CKOI-FM 96.9 in Montréal
  • CFQR-FM 92.5 in Montréal
  • CKAC-AM 730 in Montréal
  • CHMP-FM 98.5 in Montréal
  • CFOM-FM 102.9 in Québec City
  • CFEL-FM 102.1 in Québec City
  • CHLT-FM 107.7 in Sherbrooke
  • CKOY-FM 104.5 in Sherbrooke
  • CIME-FM 103.9 in St-Jérôme
  • CHLN-FM 106.9 in Trois-Rivières

The stations to be sold off by Cogeco include: CJEC-FM and CFEL-FM stations in the Lévis/Quebec City market and CKOY-FM in Sherbrooke. In a statement issued today, Cogeco said the three stations will be put up for sale following the closure of the transaction with Corus expected to take place on February 1st, 2011.

After the deal closes, Cogeco will own 16 radio stations in Quebec.

Read the entire CRTC Broadcasting Decision and then discuss the deal in Digital Home’s Canadian AM/FM discussion forum .