Starz COO agrees new contract following Lionsgate deal

Starz has agreed a new long-term contract with its COO, Jeffrey Hirsch. The deal will see Hirsch remaining with Lionsgate-owned Starz until at least December 2020. He joined the US-based premium cable business in 2015 from Time Warner Cable, and has gone on to rebrand the Starz network, reposition the Starz Encore channels, and launch […]

Malone on Starz: international expansion and distribution partnerships will be key

Lionsgate’s acquisition of Starz creates a new opportunity to strengthen the business, expand internationally to compete with global premium players like Netflix and to develop a business model based on closer integration with distribution platforms such as Liberty Global, according to Liberty Global chairman John Malone, who held the majority stake in Starz. Speaking on […]

Lionsgate closes US$4.4 billion deal for Starz

Shareholders have overwhelmingly approved US studio Lionsgate’s takeover of Starz, meaning the deal is now closed. Lionsgate shareholders were 98% in favour of the deal, and Starz shareholders 95% in favour. Starz, as a Lionsgate subsidiary, will no longer have a separate Nasdaq listing. Lionsgate said the deal “creates a vertically integrated global content platform […]

Liberty to make ‘selective’ content investments

Liberty Global CEO Mike Fries has said that the company will be “selective” about content investments, but hinted work is now underway with Lionsgate on a string of shows. Speaking on Liberty Global’s third quarter earnings call, Fries said that Liberty has “four or five great ideas cooking with Lionsgate”, after it took a 3.4% […]

Liberty Global to increase online content focus

Liberty Global will look to increasingly focus its content spend online, according to company CEO Mike Fries. Speaking at Goldman Sachs’ 25th Annual Communacopia Conference in New York yesterday, Fries said that currently Liberty spends some US$2 billion per year on content, most of which is currently “spent on channels like Discovery”. “An increasing amount of that […]

Liberty Global to make ‘smart’ investments in content

Liberty Global plans to make “smart, opportunistic investments” in content following its recent announcement that it would commission four original drama series from All3Media, according to president and CEO Mike Fries. Speaking to analysts after the company unveiled strong Q2 financial results at the end of last week, Fries said that the group would make […]

Lionsgate can ‘dramatically scale’ drama with Starz

Lionsgate chairman and CEO Jon Feltheimer has said the US$4.4 billion (€3.9 billion) acquisition of premium cable channel Starz is “the most transformative transaction in [the studio’s] history”. Furthermore, the merger will provide Lionsgate a “unique opportunity to dramatically scale” production of “premium television production, which we believe is the critical success factor for any content-driven […]

Lionsgate buys Starz for $4.4bn

Studio Lionsgate has acquired premium cable channels provider Starz for US$4.4 billion (€4 billion). The deal had long been mooted with Starz CEO Chris Albrecht telling DTVE sister title TBI late last year that consolidation made sense in the current market. The Starz boss renewed his contract at the firm this week until 2020. The […]

Report: Lionsgate restarts Starz talks

Lionsgate Entertainment is reportedly back in talks to buy US premium cable channel Starz. The pair was previously linked in late-2014, and came closer together last year when Starz’s main shareholder, John Malone, bought 3.4% of Lionsgate through his Liberty Global cable group. Bloomberg has now reported that talks over Lionsgate acquiring the Outlander network […]

MGM, Lionsgate buy into free VOD service

US studios Lionsgate Entertainment and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer have taken equity stakes in ad-supported VOD service Tubi TV. The agreement means both studios will now supply movies to the adRise-owned service, which is currently only available in the US but soon hits Canada through a recent deal with Blue Ant Media. Feature films confirmed include Midnight Cowboy, […]