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01 August 2017, 10:58 | Lionel James
With the acquisition Discovery can cut costs and use Scripps's shows to further its international reach
As of December 31, 2016, the Company's U.S. Networks segment consisted of six national television networks: HGTV, Food Network, Travel Channel, DIY Network, Cooking Channel and Great American Country.
The combination is expected to create cost savings of $350 million, the companies also said.
As is often the case with deals, shares of the buyer, in this case Discovery, were trending about 1.7 percent lower, while the stock of the takeover target rose about 1 percent. Scripps shareholders will own about 20% of the new combined company, while Discovery shareholders will own 80%. (NASDAQ:SNI)'s stock on Friday traded at beginning with a price of $86.02 and when day-trade ended the stock finally edged up 0.58% to reach at $86.91. And he argued: "While we believe the two companies are likely better positioned together, rather than apart, the longer-term issues facing the industry still remain".
Both Discovery and Scripps reported quarterly earnings on Monday that reflected the challenges facing US media companies.
The company reported $0.68 EPS for the quarter, missing the Zacks' consensus estimate of $0.72 by $0.04.
Janedis cited lower overall TV viewership for USA networks and attempts to sell more networks to new digital TV providers promoting "skinny bundles".
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Firms such as Amazon and Netflix are increasing competition in the sector.
The combined company's larger programming slate might give it an advantage in negotiations for inclusion in skinny bundles, or economy-priced cable packages that offer fewer channels than a standard contract.
"The transaction supports and accelerates Discovery's pivot from a linear TV-only company to a leading content provider across all screens and services around the world", David Zaslav, Discovery's chief executive, told investors.
The deal, which is subject to approval of both sets of shareholders and regulatory watchdogs, includes around US$2.7 billion of Scripps' net debt. The combined company will house five of the top pay TV networks for women and account for more than 20 percent share of women watching prime-time pay TV in the U.S.
The acquisition could also lead to further consolidation among on other players in the market, including Viacom which had also been in talks to acquire Scripps.
Lowe is expected to join Discovery's board of directors once the deal closes. It had tried unsuccessfully twice before to buy Scripps. Allen & Co LLC and J.P. Morgan Securities served as financial advisers to Scripps. Evercore served as financial adviser to the Scripps family.
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