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Discovery Communications gets US govt nod for Scripps Networks merger

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MUMBAI: Discovery Communications (Discovery) can finally heave a sigh of relief as the United States Department of Justice has closed its investigation into the company's proposed acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive (Scripps Networks). Back in 2017, the American mass media company agreed to purchase Scripps Networks in a deal valued at $14.6 billion.

According to the deal between the companies last July, the collaboration is expected to extend Scripps Networks' content to international audiences, increase opportunities for advertisers and digital distribution partners and unlock significant cost synergies.

After the conclusion of the investigation, Discovery president and CEO David Zaslav said, "We are pleased to have passed this significant regulatory milestone on our path to acquire Scripps Networks Interactive." He termed the conclusion as “an integral step toward closing our enthusiast audiences around the world."

The closing of the proposed deal now depends on completion of a review in Ireland and other customary closing conditions. The transaction is expected to close by the end of the first quarter of 2018 ended 31 March. Till then, the companies will continue to operate as separate and independent entities.

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