Comcast Corp. and NBC Universal could be forced to spend from six months to a year convincing Washington regulators to approve their megadeal, according to a story in the Wall Street Journal.
If Comcast agrees to purchase majority control of NBC Universal, the Obama administration will face its first media megadeal, and deal-watchers expect lengthy scrutiny before the government approves of the marriage, according to a story in the Wall Street Journal.
Written by Shira Ovide and Amy Schatz, the story says the government would likely impose restrictions to mitigate potential harm to rivals and consumers, and may force the merged company to sell its sports network or an NBC station in Philadelphia, Boston or Chicago, all markets where it would have a significant number of cable subscribers, as well as control of a sports network and a TV station.
WSJ Online subscribers may read the full story here.
Meanwhile, deal-watchers say there isn’t much they already know about Comcast’s plans for the merged company, if the deal happens. A Heard on the Street column notes that the few issues left un-leaked include: will Comcast get its name in lights on NBC’s famed headquarters at Rockefeller Center? And who will play Brian Roberts in future episodes of 30 Rock?
The full Heard on the Street, again for WSJ Online subscribers, is here.