Shareholders approve Clear Channel buyout

It took just about three weeks for the biggest radio station operator in the US, Clear Channel Communications, to accept a buyout offer after announcing last fall that it was considering 'strategic alternatives,' an Associated Press report said.

It took another 10 months for shareholders to finally approve the deal, the Associated Press report said.

Shareholders this week gave their approval to a $19.5 billion buyout offer from a private equity group led by Thomas H. Lee Partners and Bain Capital Partners, the report said.

The offer was first announced in November but was sweetened after some large shareholders signaled they would oppose earlier offers, it added.

The latest offer was $39.20 per share in cash or stock in what would be a privately owned company. Current shareholders could end up with as much as 30% of the new company.

Of the shares voted, about 98% were in favor of the buyout of the San Antonio-based company in a preliminary tabulation, Clear Channel said.

The company said more than 73% of the total shares outstanding and entitled to vote at the meeting were in favor the deal.

Two-thirds of shareholders had to approve the buyout, and those who didn't vote were counted as voting against it. Previous offers of $37.60 and $39 per share were deemed too low by some and weren't expected to pass. The buyers will also assume $8 billion in debt.

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