The U.S. Department of Justice has given the green light for Discovery Communications’ proposed acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive. In a statement, Discovery said that the DOJ had concluded its investigation into the proposed merger, clearing the way for the deal to go through.
According to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the companies expect to close the deal on March 6.
Discovery announced its intention to buy Scripps in a cash-and-stock deal worth $11.9 billion in July 2017. The combined entity would control a suite of non-fiction channels, including Discovery Channel, Food Network, Travel Channel and TLC.
The combined company is expected to have more leverage in negotiations with distributors, both legacy players like cable companies, and new over-the-top entrants, and offer larger advertising packages running across multiple channels with similar non-fiction content.
Discovery also reported its full-year and fourth-quarter earnings results on Tuesday. Revenues rose 11% for the quarter to $1.86 billion, although fourth-quarter profit declined due to a one-time impairment charge of $1.32 billion related to its European business, as well as costs associated with the pending merger.