CLEAR CHANNEL ACQUIRES ACKERLY GROUP FOR $800 MILLION

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CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- Clear Channel Worldwide acquired radio, television and out-of-home media company Ackerley Group, Seattle, for $800 million in stock, including the assumption of nearly $300 million of Ackerley's debt.

The merger allows San Antonio-based Clear Channel to expand its outdoor presence into Boston, Portland, Ore., and Seattle, three of the top 25 markets in which the company did not have a presence. Ackerley currently operates 6,000 outdoor displays in the three cities.

The deal also represents Clear Channel's entry into the Seattle radio market, where Ackerley owns four stations and provides sales and services to a fifth.

In addition to the radio and outdoor components, the acquisition nearly doubles Clear Channel's TV stations, adding 18 to its existing stable of 19. Clear Channel also operates more than 1,220 radio stations, 770,000 out-of-home displays and numerous entertainment venues worldwide.

"This is going to enable us to give marketers more cross-platform advertising deals," said a Clear Channel spokeswoman, adding that Clear Channel has a radio, outdoor or live entertainment presence in 15 of Ackerley's 18 TV markets.

The agreement entitles Ackerley Group shareholders to receive 0.35 shares of Clear Channel Communications common stock for each share of Ackerley stock they own.

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