Byron Allen is looking to expand his business portfolio with a massive bid to acquire Disney’s ABC television network and assets like FX and National Geographic cable channels.
According to CBS News, the media mogul is offering $10 billion for the takeover. A source with knowledge on the matter told Bloomberg that the offer is “preliminary” and “could change” at any time. The figure for the deal is based on the networks’ accrued $1.2 billion in earnings before taxes, interest, depreciation and amortization, the platform added.
The deal, which has also been confirmed by CBS MoneyWatch, includes ABC’s national TV network as well as several regional stations. The bid comes after Disney CEO, Bob Iger, noted in a July interview with CNBC that the company could sell some of its traditional TV assets.
“We are expansive in our thinking about [the linear business], and we’re going to look expansively … [for] opportunities there because, clearly, it’s a business that’s going to continue to struggle,” Iger said.
Despite Allen’s mouthwatering bid, Disney said in a statement on September 14 that no decision has been made. “While we are open to considering a variety of strategic options for our linear businesses, at this time The Walt Disney Company has made no decision with respect to the divestiture of ABC or any other property and any report to that effect is unfounded,” the statement reads.
This is not the first time the comedian-turned-business mogul has made a bid to acquire a giant television network. In 2021, Face2Face Africa reported that he made an $8 billion bid for the acquisition of TEGNA, the media company with 64 stations in 51 markets across the U.S.
In 2018, his Entertainment Studios became the owners of The Weather Channel. The deal involved Allen gaining the channel via his company Allen Media LLC from Comcast Corporation and private-equity firms Blackstone Group LP and Bain Capital for $300 million dollars.
Allen started Entertainment Studios in 1993 in his home. Since then, he’s opened offices in Chicago, Denver, Raleigh, North Carolina and Los Angeles. Some of the networks that Allen owns are Pets.TV, Comedy.TV, Recipe.TV and Cars. TV. Allen’s acquisition of multiple media platforms has made him one of the richest Black Americans.
He recently made history as the first African American to spend the most money on a home in the United States. The previous record was held by Beyonce and Jay-Z, who bought an $88 million compound in Bel-Air in 2017.
The 62-year-old reportedly paid $100 million for a 10,698-square-foot home that sits on 3.6 acres above the beach and boasts eight bedrooms and 12 bathrooms.