Byron Allen’s Allen Media Group has acquired MGM’s over-the-air broadcast television networks This TV and Light TV.
The price wasn’t disclosed. The networks, a mix of MGM’s film and television content, are available through over-the-air, cable and online for free. This TV launched in 2008. Light TV, with family friendly and faith-based programming, was started in 2016, headed by MGM TV CEO Mark Burnett and his wife, actress Roma Downey.
Allen Media Group’s expanding portfolio also includes The Weather Channel, Cars.TV, Comedy.TV and a handful of others focused on genres from entertainment and legal news to travel and pets.
“We are going to continue to invest a substantial amount of capital into the programming, marketing, and distribution of these networks. We are strong believers in broadcasting and free-streaming direct-to-consumer platforms,” said Allen, founder and CEO of Entertainment Studios/Allen Media Group.
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Chris Ottinger, MGM’s President of World Wide Television Distribution & Acquisitions said, “Byron Allen is an innovator and has built a tremendous portfolio of networks within his organization. With a reach of over 81 million households, these networks will be great additions to his Allen Media Group.”
MGM has been squeezed by high debt and declining cash flow. Its hedge fund owner has reportedly shopped the company, citing Apple, Comcast, Amazon and Facebook as potential buyers. MGM has recently denied that the new James Bond film No Time To Die will be sold to streamers Netflix or Apple TV after its theatrical release was pushed from November to next spring.
Entertainment Studios also owns 16 major network affiliate broadcast television stations and has said it plans to buy more. Other assets include The Grio, a digital video news platform aimed at African-Americans. Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures is a full-service, theatrical motion picture distributor.
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