September 7, 2016 — TEGNA announced this morning it plans to spin off Cars.com to become its own publicly traded company. The transaction, which likely will be tax free for TEGNA shareholders, should take place in the first half of 2017.
TEGNA, which became public last year following the split with media giant Gannett, is one of the top television broadcast companies and is the biggest owner of NBC and CBS affilates in the U.S. ”Each business will have increased strategic, operating, and financial flexibility at a time when the broadcast and digital sectors are both rapidly evolving,” says Grace Matore, TEGNA’s CEO who is retiring following the spin off.
Meanwhile, Alex Vetter, currently CEO of Cars.com, is expected to continue in his role. Dave Lougee, president of TEGNA’s media unit, will become the new CEO of TEGNA.
TEGNA also is reviewing strategic alternatives for CareerBuilder.com, it’s other leading digital property.
TBR wrote on March 23, 2015 that a spinoff of Cars.com was a possible scenario for TEGNA. We’ll provide more analysis of what the transaction may mean for Cars.com over the next couple of years. The early analysis, though, says the move will put Cars.com in a much better position to make acquisitions once the deal is completed.
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