Comcast Shareholders Approve Deal
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PHILADELPHIA (AP) _ Comcast stockholders overwhelmingly approved on Wednesday the company’s planned $45 billion purchase of AT&T’s cable television business, which is currently the nation’s largest.
The combination of Comcast, the nation’s third largest cable television company, and AT&T Broadband would create a new AT&T Comcast with 22.3 million subscribers. That would be nearly twice as many as the closest rival, AOL Time Warner.
The Comcast shareholders’ approval was assured. Company president Brian L. Roberts and his family control 86.7 percent of the voting power in Comcast’s stock. The merger passed with 99.8 percent of the vote, according to a Comcast spokesman. Two other votes related to the merger passed with at least 96 percent approval, the company said.
AT&T shareholders were voting Wednesday at that company’s annual meeting in Charleston, S.C. Both companies’ shareholders also had been casting ballots online and by mail.
The companies still need federal regulators’ approval, with the Federal Communications Commission and Department of Justice expected to approve the deal later in the year.
AT&T expects the merger to help improve its credit rating by eliminating as much as $20 billion of the company’s debt, spokeswoman Eileen Connolly has said.
On the Net:
AT&T Broadband: http://www.attbroadband.com