Sony Pictures TV to Acquire 16 U.K. Channels
Pictures Television said it reached an
agreement to acquire CSC Media Group in the United Kingdom. Under the
agreement, SPT will own and operate the 16 ad-supported channels in the
company’s portfolio, pending regulatory approval. The deal has been
struck between SPT Networks and private equity firm Veronis Suhler
Stevenson, majority shareholders in the CSC Media Group, with SPT
acquiring 100 percent of the company.
“The acquisition of CSC further demonstrates our commitment to the U.K.
market and our intent to continue to grow our tremendously successful
global portfolio of networks,” said Andy Kaplan, president of worldwide
networks for Sony Pictures Television. “These new channels perfectly
complement our current offerings, allowing us to provide viewers with a
variety of entertainment choices and advertisers with greater reach and
Remy Minute, CEO of CSC Media Group,
said: ”CSC has grown from a small bouquet channel operator to become
one of the leading multi-channel ad-supported TV networks in the U.K.
This combination with SPT allows us to accelerate our growth trajectory,
both internationally and domestically. I very much look forward to
working with the team at SPT.”
Morgan Callagy, Partner at Veronis
Suhler Stevenson, stated: “Over the past seven years, we have presided
over meaningful growth in the CSC business during a time of significant
changes in the U.K. television industry. We are pleased to see that this
unique business will now be in an ideal home for the next phase of its
Following the acquisition, SPT
Networks will be the No. 5 cable/satellite/multichannel player in the U.K.
market in commercial ad views. Advertising on all of SPT’s channels is
sold by Sky. Once the acquisition is concluded, the company will report
to Kate Marsh, SPT’s senior vice president, Networks, Western Europe.
SPT entered the U.K. market in 2011 with one channel feed—Sony
Entertainment Television—on Sky and had grown to 9 channel feeds across
multiple platforms including 2 free-to-air national feeds on Freeview,
reaching a combined total of more than 20 million viewers per month.
Channel brands include Sony Entertainment Television, Sony Movie
Channel, Movies 4 Men, and Movie Mix. This acquisition complements
SPT’s current movie and entertainment channels and expands its offering
into the music and children’s genres with the addition of brands
including True Entertainment, Pop and Chart ShowTV. Additionally, the
deal expands SPT’s reach on Freeview from two to four channels. The CSC
channels are also distributed internationally in Ireland and Sub-Saharan
Berenson & Company acted as exclusive financial advisor to SPT on
this transaction. Lepe Partners acted as financial advisor to CSC.
SPT said CSC is one of the U.K.’s largest independent cable/satellite TV channel
groups with a portfolio of channels across kids, music, and movies and
entertainment genres. CSC was founded in 2007 via the acquisition of
the Chart Show portfolio of channels by private equity group Veronis
Suhler Stevenson and a new management team. Its channels are available
on Sky Digital, Virgin Media, Freesat and on Freeview. CSC also owns
and operates a number of complementary websites, on-demand services and