July 11, 2002, 8:49 AM — Comcast Corp. shareholders approved the merger with AT&T Broadband Wednesday, paving the way for the creation of the nation's largest cable television company, Comcast announced.
The companies agreed to merge in December of last year as AT&T sought to unload parts of its business and return to its core operations of telephone and data services. AT&T shareholders approved the company's restructuring plan at their annual meeting also on Wednesday, the company said. That plan includes the spin-off and merger of AT&T Broadband with Comcast, which is based in Philadelphia and owns the Flyers professional hockey team and the 76ers men's professional basketball team.
In related news, Comcast and AT&T both said that nearly 90 percent of the local cable franchises that must agree to a new parent company have done so. That means that the move to create AT&T Comcast is on target to close in the fourth quarter of this year. The deal still must be approved by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Federal Communications Commission, but regulatory approval is expected.