Discovery Communications is buying fellow US cable broadcaster Scripps Networks for $14.6 billion, bringing together two major portfolios of domestic and international channels under one roof.
The combination of the two groups will create a broadcaster with some of the biggest channel brands on both sides of the Atlantic, potentially boosting Discovery’s strength when negotiating carriage deals with pay-TV firms.
Today’s deal will also give Discovery part ownership of UKTV, the multi-channel broadcaster behind Dave, Gold, Really and W, which Scripps co-owns with BBC Worldwide.
David Zaslav, President and CEO, Discovery Communications, said: “This is an exciting new chapter for Discovery.
“Scripps is one of the best run media companies in the world with terrific assets, strong brands and popular talent and formats.
“Our business is about great storytelling, authentic characters and passionate super fans.
“We believe that by coming together with Scripps, we will create a stronger, more flexible and more dynamic media company with a global content engine that can be fully optimized and monetized across our combined networks, products and services in every country around the world.”
Kenneth W. Lowe, Chairman, President & CEO, Scripps Networks Interactive, added: “Through the passion and dedication of our incredible employees, and with the support of the Scripps family, we have built a lifestyle content company that touches the lives of consumers every single day.
“This agreement with Discovery presents an unmatched opportunity for Scripps to grow its leading lifestyle brands across the world and on new and emerging channels including short-form, direct-to-consumer and streaming platforms.”