CBS buys Network TEN
CBS to own TEN, ELEVEN, ONE, tenplay and plans to launch CBS All Access.
Lachlan Murdoch and Bruce Gordon will not be getting their hands on TEN with shock news that administrators have agreed to a deal with CBS.
The deal includes TEN, ELEVEN, ONE and tenplay and also signals plans for CBS All Access to launch as a streaming platform in Australia.
The transaction is subject to approval of the creditors at the second meeting of creditors, likely on Friday 8th September.
It is estimated that the transaction will take between six and eight weeks to complete with CBS Studios refinancing the current financing facilities of TEN – including immediate financial support to ensure continuity of operations.
The transaction will be subject to regulatory approvals with statutory processes to take place.
“Network TEN is a prime broadcasting asset with over half a century of experience and brand equity in Australia,” said Leslie Moonves, Chairman and CEO, CBS Corporation. “We have been able to acquire it at a valuation that gives us confidence we will grow this asset by applying our programming expertise in a market with which we are already familiar.”
“Network TEN and CBS have enjoyed a close working relationship for nearly two decades, and now CBS will continue to provide Network TEN with access to the very best in U.S. content. We also look forward to working with the outstanding team at Network TEN to enhance and expand on its great legacy of Australian news, drama, reality and sports programming,” said Armando Nuñez, President and CEO, CBS Studios International. “This acquisition not only presents CBS with considerable broadcasting opportunities in Australia, but also allows for further multi-platform distribution and growth.”
Paul Anderson, CEO of TEN, said, “CBS and TEN have had a strong relationship for a number of years; we are very excited about further developing that relationship.”
The Receivers and Managers (Christopher Hill, Phil Carter and David McEvoy of PPB Advisory) and the Voluntary Administrators (Mark Korda, Jarrod Villani and Jenny Nettleton of KordaMentha Restructuring) of Ten Network Holdings Limited (Network Ten) today announced that wholly owned entities of the New York Stock Exchange listed, CBS Corporation have entered into a binding Transaction document to acquire the business and assets of Network Ten.
CBS Corporation is currently a key content provider to Ten and operates businesses which span the media and entertainment industries, including the CBS Television Network, cable networks, content production and distribution, television stations, internet-based businesses, and consumer publishing. CBS Corporation is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and has a current market capitalisation of ~US$28 billion.
The Transaction contemplates an acquisition of Network Ten by CBS, which will be effected by way of a refinance of existing secured debt arrangements (including shareholder guarantor fees) in full and a Deed of Company Arrangement (‘DOCA’) that will be put to creditors at the second creditors meeting. Further details on the expected return to creditors and timing of the second creditors meeting will be provided by the Voluntary Administrators in their Report to Creditors to be released in the coming days.
The decision to enter an exclusive transaction deed with CBS followed a rigorous sales process run in conjunction with independent adviser, Moelis Australia Advisory Pty Ltd (Moelis).
Network Ten Receiver and Manager, and PPB Advisory Partner, Christopher Hill, said: “Network Ten has played a significant role in Australia’s media landscape over many decades, and the sale of the business to CBS will allow the iconic broadcaster to move into a new chapter on a strong and stable footing.
Administrator Jarrod Villani of KordaMentha Restructuring stated: “the Receivers and Administrators will work closely together to ensure that operations continue uninterrupted while the transaction is finalised. As part of the agreement to purchase the Network Ten business, CBS will provide immediate financial support to ensure continuity of operations ahead of the upcoming meeting of creditors.