Gray Nears Deal to Buy Meredith’s TV Stations

Gray Television Inc. is in advanced discussions to acquire Meredith Corp.’s broadcast stations for more than $2.5 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

A deal could be announced as soon as this week, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the matter isn’t public. Talks could still fall apart.

Meredith is working with a financial adviser on the potential divestment of its 17 local stations, Bloomberg News previously reported.

The sale would allow Meredith to focus on its magazine division, which publishes titles such as Better Homes & Gardens and People. It would also help the media conglomerate boost its digital strategy, one of the people said.

Meredith declined to comment while Gray’s representative couldn’t be reached for a comment.

Meredith’s stations include affiliates of Fox and CBS in markets such as Atlanta, Las Vegas and Portland, Oregon, according to its most recent annual report. The division contributed 27% of its revenue in its most recent fiscal year.

Meredith fell 0.5% to close at $31.10 in New York on Friday, giving the company a market value of about $1.4 billion. Gray Television shares declined 0.3% to $20.32.

The mergers and acquisitions market has been ripe for local television properties, which generate a lot of cash and operate in a highly fragmented industry.

Gray has been building up its portfolio of stations in recent years through acquisitions. Buying Meredith’s stations would represent its largest deal since 2018, when it bought privately held Raycom Media Inc. for $3.6 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

In April, it said it would sell some the stations it acquired from Quincy Media Inc. earlier this year to Byron Allen’s Allen Media group.

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