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EU approves Comcast acquisition of NBC Universal

Comcast’s acquisition of NBC Universal moved a step closer after it won European regulatory approval.

US cable operator Comcast, which runs a cable TV service as well as a raft of international pay-TV networks including E! Entertainment and the Style Network, has offered conglomerate General Electric US$6.5bn (€5.1bn) in cash as well as its TV assets in return for a 51% stake in NBC Universal, which also operates a number of international pay channels as well as a film and TV studio and worldwide distribution division.

The European Union’s competition watchdog, the European Commission, cleared the deal. “After examining the operation, the Commission concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area,” it said in a statement.

The two companies are now waiting for regulatory approval from US authorities.