By Michael J. de la Merced and Andrew Ross Sorkin
General Electric and the cable giant Comcast have moved closer to a deal giving control of NBC Universal to Comcast, and a formal announcement could be made sometime next week, people briefed on the talks said Sunday.
After a series of meetings last week, the two companies reached a tentative agreement on Friday over the main points of a deal, these people said. Comcast would own about 51 percent of NBC Universal, contributing several billions of dollars in cash and its own stable of cable networks to the new venture. G.E., which currently owns 80 percent of the entertainment company, would retain the other 49 percent and would contribute about $12 billion in debt to the new entity, though it is expected eventually to sell its ownership interest over several years.