Nielsen Holdings N.V. (NYS: NLSN) announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Arbitron Inc. (NYS: ARB) , an international media and marketing research firm.

Nielsen has agreed to acquire all of the outstanding common stock of Arbitron for $48 per share in cash, representing a premium of approximately 26 percent to Arbitron’s closing price on December 17, 2012.  The transaction has been approved by the boards of both companies and is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory review.

With Arbitron assets, Nielsen intends to further expand its “Watch” segment’s audience measurement across screens and forms of listening. “These integrated, innovative capabilities will enable broader measurement of consumer media behavior in more markets around the world,” said Steve Hasker, Nielsen President of Global Media Products and Advertiser Solutions. “We will also bring local clients greater visibility to empower more precise advertising placement and campaign effectiveness.”

Together, Nielsen and Arbitron generated total revenues of $6.0 billion and combined pro forma adjusted EBITDA of $1.7 billion based on the 12 months ended September 30, 2012. The combined assets will support Nielsen’s strong cash flow characteristics and will enable continued investment in growth initiatives. Excluding estimated transaction costs and purchase accounting adjustments, the acquisition is expected to be approximately $0.13 accretive to adjusted EPS 12 months after the close and approximately $0.19 accretive to adjusted EPS 24 months after the close. Cost synergies associated with the acquisition are expected to be at least $20 million and will be largely driven by the integration of technology platforms and data acquisition efforts.

Source:  Dailyfinance.com