Thursday, March 28, 2013

Report: Why CBS Is Buying Half of TV Guide Network

CBS executives announced on Tuesday that the network is buying half of TV Guide Network (and the website, which CBS will eventually re-brand and operate with co-owner Lionsgate.

The price of the sale, according to Bloomberg News, is more than $100 million.

TV Guide Network, the one-time listings channel, has staggered through the basic cable hinterlands in a state of existential confusion since the advent of one-click cable menus. Why would CBS Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves want it?

The chief appeal to CBS is that TV Guide Network is currently available in more than 80 million homes. That’s a lot of channel surfers, in other words, that Moonves can potentially woo with re-purposed CBS programming.

And at a time when cable distributors are wary of annoying customers by adding channels to their already hefty bundled-subscription packages, media companies hoping to create a basic cable channel can find it easier to buy and re-brand an existing network (as Al Jazeera did recently, in buying Current TV) than to build one from scratch.

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