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Dr. Malone Gives Comcast-NBCU a Checkup

Jeff Baumgartner

5:20 PM -- Liberty Media Corp. (NYSE: LMC) chief and renowned dealmaker John Malone weighed in today on a purported deal that would allow Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) to take control of NBC Universal and give the nation's largest cable MSO a massive content play. (See Keeping Up With Comcast and Does Comcast Have Eyes for NBCU? )

Today during an interview with CNBC's David Faber, Malone said the Comcast-NBC deal appears to be "heavily engineered" and "obviously was custom-tailored for both sides' needs." Sounds like Dr. Malone, who helped engineer the $36 billion sale of Tele-Communications Inc. (TCI) to AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) back in 1998, is either proud of what cable friends at Comcast are trying to pull off… or just a bit jelly that they sought out the terms first.

The interview is below, but Malone stressed that NBC's broadcast affiliates may hold the cards on what demands will be made on Comcast to get a deal sealed without a big fight. "There's just too many advertising-driven businesses in the local marketplace to be viable, given the siphoning off of revenue that the Internet has represented" he said.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

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