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Discovery Backs UK News Channel Led by Andrew Neil

(Image credit: Discovery)

LONDON—Discovery has been revealed as the lead investor in news channel GB News, which will count Andrew Neil as its chairman.

The new 24-hour channel is described as a right-leaning channel that will aim to take on the likes of BBC, ITN and Sky News.

GB News is currently aiming to raise between $55 million and $65 million—with Discovery said to have invested about a quarter of the capital the channel hopes to raise by launch.

Neil has announced he has left the BBC to join GB News, tweeting: “I’m delighted to announce I have accepted the post of chairman of GB News, a new news channel to be launched early in the New Year bringing new perspectives to the news. I will also be presenting a new nightly prime-time show on GB News. Watch this space.”

The Spectator, which Neil also chairs, confirmed Discovery’s involvement. It described GB News as “Not a British answer to Fox News (the analogy often reached for whenever a rival to the BBC is mentioned) but a station that might broadcast good news a bit more often, or would not be so quick to assume that everything that goes wrong is the fault of the government. One that takes a more even-handed approach to culture wars and doesn’t see coverage of U.S. politics an exercise in exorcism.”

The management team will include Angelos Frangopoulos (ex-Sky Australia) John McAndrew (ex-Sky News) as director of news and programming.