Comcast, NBC Universal Merger Approved

Comcast’s purchase of NBC Universal is expected to be complete before the end of the month, following today’s approval of the merger by the Federal Communications Commission and the Justice Department.

The government approved the $30 billion transaction, tagging it with numerous conditions designed to ensure fair competition between Comcast and other programmers, ISPs and cable companies.

Other stipulations are intended to spur broadband service in underserved communities, schools and libraries; and to increase news coverage, children’s television, and Spanish-language programming.

This marks the first time that a cable company will control a major broadcast network. Under terms of the agreement, Comcast is buying a majority stake in NBC Universal from General Electric.

The purchase will give Comcast a stake in online TV program viewing site Hulu, a key point considering changing consumer behavior has jeopardized Comcast’s traditional cable television business. This new deal will help ensure the company’s role in the future of online television viewing.

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Sarah Skates has worked in the music business for more than a decade and is a longtime contributor to MusicRow.

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