Discovery Communications (Nasdaq: DISC) has agreed to pay $70 million for an additional 24.5% stake in OWN, the cable channel joint venture with Oprah Winfrey. This gives Discovery a majority ownership north of 70%, with Winfrey's Harpo Inc. retaining the rest.
- Why it's the BFD: Um, it's a deal involving Oprah, who extended her exclusivity agreement with OWN through 2025. It's the first time she's taken any cash out of OWN, which she and Discovery first announced back in 2006.
- Bottom line: "Discovery is increasing its stake in OWN as it looks to complete its acquisition of fellow cable programmer Scripps in early 2018, whose stable including Food Network and HGTV will be combined with Discovery's portfolio of female-focused networks, including TLC, ID and OWN. That gives Discovery five of the top pay-TV networks for women, representing 20% share of women watching primetime pay-TV in the U.S." — Nellie Andreeva, Deadline
More findings from the new Probitas Partners survey of 98 institutional investors:
- Increased fear of a market top.
- Investors remain most interested in middle-market buyout funds (North America and Europe), despite concerns about high valuations.
- Strong interest in sector-specific funds, particularly in tech and healthcare.
- Interest in VC funds decreased after three straight years of growth.