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Arbitron shareholders approve sale to Nielsen

Shareholders of Arbitron Inc. overwhelmingly approved the sale of the Columbia-based company to Nielsen Holdings N.V. during a special stockholders meeting Tuesday.

Nielsen, the TV ratings company, announced late last year that it would pay $1.26 billion in cash for Arbitron, which measures radio audiences. Arbitron spokesman Thom Mocarsky said the deal still needs approval from the Federal Trade Commission. Company officials, though, expect the sale to close by the end of the third quarter.

Arbitron has nearly 1,000 full-time workers nationwide, including about 640 in Columbia. Any changes in offices or number of employees will be up to Nielsen, Mocarsky said.

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