NEW YORK: Eight local TV stations belonging to the Fox Network are to be sold to Oak Hill Capital Partners, a private equity firm based in Stamford, Connecticut and New York. $1.1 billion (€763.4m; £556.3m) will change hands as a result of the deal.

According to the London Daily Telegraph: "News Corporation is selling the assets to focus on its largest and most lucrative markets; it may use proceeds to finance at least some of the $5.2bn it has paid for Dow Jones."

And in the opinion of another observer - Richard Dorfman, managing director of New York investment firm Richard Alan - the deal is "a smart decision" by Oak Hill that will enable it to service its debt from ongoing revenues from the TV stations.

In a statement issued over the weekend, NewsCorp said it is unlikely the deal will be finalized before the third quarter of 2008

Observes Dorfman: "NewsCorp.'s focus today is much more on internet properties, such as MySpace, and cable." He added that the sale of the stations "will help NewsCorp raise capital. [It] is not walking away from the healthy broadcast world."

The media giant's remaining portfolio includes twenty-seven stations in major markets including New York, Boston and Los Angeles.

Data sourced from and International Herald-Tribune; additional content by WARC staff