Competition Bureau issues No Action Letter
MONTREAL, March 4, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Astral Media Inc. (TSX: ACM.A
ACM.B) ("Astral") today announced that the Canadian Competition Bureau (the "Bureau") has issued a "no action letter" in connection with its previously
announced acquisition by BCE Inc. ("Bell"). The issuance of this letter constitutes one of the two required
regulatory approvals contemplated in the arrangement agreement entered
into by Astral and Bell in connection with the transaction.
"Competition Bureau clearance is a key milestone in the progress of our
transaction and reflects Astral and Bell's commitment to making sure
that the consumer always comes first" said Ian Greenberg, President and
CEO of Astral. "Together, Astral and Bell Media will have the scale to
invest, compete and deliver on the opportunities ahead for all
Canadians in this rapidly changing media landscape and I look forward
to continuing to work in close collaboration with Bell's team towards
securing CRTC approval for the transaction".
The no action letter confirms that the Bureau, following an extensive
review of the proposed acquisition of Astral by Bell and the entering
into of a consent agreement with Bell, will not challenge the
acquisition of Astral by Bell before the Competition Tribunal under the
merger provisions of the Competition Act. The consent agreement provides for certain conditions described by
Bell in a press release issued today.
Originally announced on March 16, 2012, the $3.38 billion transaction
was approved by shareholders representing more than 99% of Astral
shares and the Québec Superior Court. The transaction remains subject
to closing conditions, including the approval of the CRTC. The CRTC
approval is the only remaining regulatory approval required in
connection with the transaction. There can be no assurance that the
transaction will occur, or that it will occur on the terms and
conditions currently contemplated.
Certain statements made in this news release, including, but not limited
to, statements relating to the transaction and other statements that
are not historical facts, are forward-looking. Forward-looking
statements, by their very nature, are subject to inherent risks and
uncertainties and are based on several assumptions which give rise to
the possibility that actual results or events could differ materially
from our expectations expressed in or implied by such forward-looking
statements. As a result, we cannot guarantee that any forward-looking
statement will materialize and you are cautioned not to place undue
reliance on these forward-looking statements.
The forward-looking statements contained in this news release describe
Astral's expectations at the date of this news release and,
accordingly, are subject to change after such date. Except as may be
required by Canadian securities laws, we do not undertake any
obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements contained
in this news release, whether as a result of new information, future
events or otherwise. Forward-looking statements are provided herein for
the purpose of giving information about the transaction and its
expected impact. Readers are cautioned that such information may not be
appropriate for other purposes. The completion of the transaction is
subject to customary closing conditions, termination rights and other
risks and uncertainties including, without limitation, approval by the
CRTC. Accordingly, there can be no assurance that the transaction will
occur, or that it will occur on the terms and conditions currently
contemplated by the parties. The transaction could be modified,
restructured or terminated.
Founded in 1961, Astral is one of Canada's largest media companies. It
operates several media properties - pay and specialty television,
radio, out-of-home advertising, and digital - that are among the most
popular in the country. Astral plays a central role in community life
across the country by offering diverse, rich, and vibrant programming
that meets the tastes and needs of consumers and advertisers alike. To
learn more about Astral, please visit Astral.com.
SOURCE: Astral Media Inc.
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Astral Media Inc.