08.25.2008 03:25 PM
Disney considers selling all ABC O&Os
Walt Disney, one of the largest U.S. media companies, is considering selling its 10 ABC TV stations, a transition that could net as much as $4.8 billion, said David Miller, an analyst at Caris & Co. who has covered the company since 2000.
Miller told “Bloomberg News,” “We have reason to believe that Disney is heavily considering the notion of putting its 10 owned-and-operated television stations up for sale.” He said the finding is his analysis and not from outside sources.
Disney called the report “purely speculative” and declined to comment.
Disney owns stations in cities including New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. A sale would depend on at least those outlets in the biggest markets remaining affiliated with Disney’s ABC TV network, Miller noted. ABC has broadcast agreements with about 231 TV stations in the United States, he said.
By selling the stations, Disney would exit the TV distribution business and become the only large, public U.S. media company to be completely focused on content.