Friday, March 8, 2019
Report: Amazon Could Be Close To YES Net Deal
An Amazon-led group of investors that includes the New York Yankees is ready to sign a deal to buy YES Network — one of NY’s most prominent cable sports channels — for roughly $3.5 billion, two people close to the plans told The NYPost.
The offer, which one person described as “imminent,” puts the online retailer in a position to control video streaming of Yankees games and Brooklyn Nets basketball games.
The bid will be for the 80 percent of YES that the Yankees don’t already own. The deal will also be backed by the Sinclair Broadcast Group, sources said.
Entertainment giant Disney is selling YES along with 21 other regional sports channels throughout the country as part of its $71 billion deal to buy Twenty-First Century Fox. Disney, which owns ESPN, needs to sell the Fox-owned RSNs to gain regulatory approval for the merger.
The YES network was valued at $3.9 billion in 2014 when Fox paid for an 80 percent stake — leaving the Yankees with the rest.
But the value of RSNs generally have been declining as cable subscribers jump ship — thanks to streaming video companies like Netflix and Amazon.
The Amazon-led group is expected to seek to offset the decline by charging fees for streamed games, a source said.
Posted 2:59:00 AM