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Google acquires Twitter unit; Microsoft buys Simplygon

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Episode 14: A Quantum of Technology


Google acquires Twitter unit; Microsoft buys Simplygon

S&P Global Market Intelligence provides a wrap-up of U.S. media and communications deal announcements and completions from Jan. 16 to Jan. 20.

* Mediacom Communications Corp. purchased AndyCable, the television cable of Andalusia, Ala., The Andalusia Star-News reported Jan. 19, citing an official statement. The deal was reportedly finalized in the week ending Jan. 22. Ivan Bishop, whose father founded the cable company in 1965, will be retiring, while most of AndyCable's staffers will remain at the company.

* Google Inc. agreed to buy Twitter Inc. unit Fabric as part of the tech giant's goal to deliver features for iOS, Android and mobile web app development. The acquired mobile development company will join the Alphabet Inc. unit's Developer Product Group and will work with the Firebase team, Google's mobile development platform, according to a Jan. 18 blog post. After launching in 2014, Fabric has 2.5 billion active mobile devices, the Twitter unit's announcement said.

* Salem Media Group Inc.'s online division Salem Web Network acquired ChristianConcertAlerts.com, the company said Jan. 18. ChristianConcertAlerts.com is a provider of Christian artists' tour dates and events across the U.S. The website features a location-based calendar that includes more than 300 artists and 4,000 venues created by editors and user submissions, as well as artist reviews and album news.

* Cable One Inc. agreed to buy NewWave Communications for $735 million in cash from funds affiliated with GTCR LLC, a private equity company. Cable One said Jan. 18 that it expects to fund the deal with $650 million of senior secured loans and cash on hand. The transaction is subject to customary regulatory closing conditions and is expected to be completed during the second quarter. NewWave is a cable operator providing high-speed data, video and voice services to residential and business customers throughout non-urban areas of Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Texas.

* Gray Television Inc. completed its acquisitions of TV stations in the Green Bay, Quad Cities and Fairbanks television markets. Gray closed the $270 million acquisition of two TV stations, ABC (US) affiliate WBAY in Green Bay, Wis., and NBC (US) affiliate KWQC in Davenport, Iowa, which were owned and operated by Media General Inc., as part of Media General Inc.'s recent acquisition by Nexstar Media Group Inc. The company on Jan. 13 completed the acquisition of NBC affiliate KTVF, an CBS (US) affiliate KXD, and FOX (US) affiliate KFXF in the Fairbanks, Alaska, television market from Tanana Valley Television Co. and Chena Broadcasting Co. for $8.0 million in cash.

* Crown Castle International Corp. completed its $1.5 billion acquisition of FPL FiberNet Holdings LLC and certain other subsidiaries of NextEra Energy Inc. FiberNet owns or has rights to about 11,500 route miles of fiber installed and under construction in Florida and Texas. Following the acquisition, Crown Castle owns or has rights to about 28,500 route miles of fiber.

* Nexstar Broadcasting Group Inc. completed its previously announced acquisition of Media General Inc. in a cash-and-stock transaction worth about $4.6 billion. Nexstar acquired all of the outstanding shares of Media General for $10.55 a share in cash, 0.1249 of one Nexstar class A common stock and one contingent value right, or CVR, for each Media General share. Each CVR will entitle former Media General stockholders to potential additional consideration from the net cash proceeds, if any, received from the sale of Media General's spectrum in the FCC's ongoing incentive action. Nexstar Broadcasting will now be known as Nexstar Media Group Inc. The company's common stock will continue to trade on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol "NXST."

* Microsoft Corp. acquired Swedish automatic 3D data optimization solutions developer Simplygon. The acquisition will help Microsoft in 3D creation, making it easier to create, capture and share in 3D, according to a Jan. 17 blog post by Kudo Tsunoda, the corporate vice president, Next Gen Experiences, Windows and Devices Group. Following the acquisition, CEO of Simplygon, Matt Connors, along with founder and head of technology Ulrik Lindahl and co-founder Koshi Hamedi, are joining Microsoft. Simplygon assists creators and users of 3D data across industries in optimizing content pipelines and streamlining workflows.

* SBA Communications Corp. completed its merger with and into SBA Communications Corp (REIT). As a result, SBA shareholders automatically became shareholders of SBA REIT, which then changed its name to SBA Communications Corp. from SBA Communications REIT Corp. as of 11:59 p.m. ET on Jan. 13. The new entity succeeded to and continued the business and assumed the obligations of SBA immediately prior to the merger. Shares of SBA class A common stock will continue to trade on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol SBAC, effective Jan. 17, the company said.