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NBCUniversal to sell stake in A&E

July 7, 2012 at 1:36 PM

LOS ANGELES, July 7 (UPI) -- NBCUniversal is planning to bow out of its A&E Networks partnership, sources told The Hollywood Reporter.

NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast, owns 15 percent of A&E and is planning to sell that to A&E stakeholders Disney and Hearst Corp.

The deal would give both Disney and Hearst 50 percent of the cable channel company. Currently, each owns 42.5 percent.

A&E Networks includes the History, Lifetime and A&E cable channels.

For Comcast, the sales set up a purchase, an industry analyst said.

"We believe this potential sale is part of the financial plan for Comcast to buy in the remaining stake of NBCU still owned by General Electric," said Marci Ryvicker, an analyst with Wells Fargo.

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