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McLean-based Tegna spins off Cars.com

Cars.com, one of the largest online automotive classified ad sites, will become a separate, publicly traded company as of June 2017. (WTOP/Amanda Iacone)

WASHINGTON — Cars.com, one of the largest online automotive classified ad sites, will become a separate, publicly traded company as of next month.

McLean, Virginia-based Tegna, the broadcast, digital and website company that split from USA Today publisher Gannett in 2015, will spin off Cars.com in a stock deal that will give Tegna shareholders one share of Cars.com for every three shares of Tegna they own.

Cars.com, founded in 1998 and based in Chicago, will begin trading on the New York Stock Exchange June 1 under the ticker symbol “CARS.”

David Lougee, currently president of Tegna media, will become chief executive after the split, replacing Tegna’s current president and CEO Gracia Martore, who is retiring.

Alex Vetter, current president and CEO of Cars.com will continue to lead the newly separated company.

“As an independent company, we have greater flexibility to capture the opportunities ahead of us by leveraging our strong brand, innovative platform and expanding, loyal audience,” Vetter said in a statement.

Tegna, with four dozen television stations including WUSA Channel 9 in D.C., will continue to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol “TNGA.”


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