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Clear Channel Buyout Underway

SAN ANTONIO (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — The consortium of banks providing the debt financing for the $17.9 billion Clear Channel Buyout have set the wheels in motion for the completion of the deal. As previously reported in CelebrityAccess, the broadcasting and advertising conglomerate is being acquired by a private equity group, led by Bain Capital Partners LLC and Thomas H. Lee Partners LP.

Under the terms of the amended merger, shareholders will receive $36 for each share of Clear Channel that they own.

Comprised of Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley, Credit Suisse, Royal Bank of Scotland and Wachovia, the syndicate of banks had been hesitant to complete the deal in the face of the economic downturn and credit crunch that has swept the financial markets lately. The agreement to move forward makes a moot point of a number of lawsuits that had been filed over the deal in recent months.

"(These) actions significantly increase the certainty that our merger will close," said Mark Mays, CEO of Clear Channel. "Cash on the barrelhead for one of the largest LBOs (leveraged buy-outs) in history is an enormous win for our shareholders."

The buyout likely won't spell the end of the Mays clan involvement in CCE. A component of the buyout will allow shareholders to exchange up to 30% of their current shares for an equal stake in the new, privately owned company to be called CC Media Holdings. The Mays personally hold 36.5 million CCE shares which works out to approximately $1.3 billion, however it is expected that they will accept a stake in the private firm. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers