Blue Ant Media in Canada is buying digital specialty channel Bold from CBC.
The Toronto-based company said Friday it has an agreement with the troubled national pubcaster to acquire Bold, which CBC is selling in order to make ends meet.
The network announced its intent to jettison the channel earlier this year, after the Canuck government cut 10% from its budget. The cuts also led to the loss of 650 jobs and 175 programming hours.
“Acquiring bold will give Blue Ant another platform to engage audiences with unique entertainment content,” said Blue Ant CEO Michael MacMillan. “We definitely see a lot of opportunity with the channel, while also expanding our array of channel offerings.”
Blue Ant has been acquiring channels since it appeared on the scene last year, first buying Glassbox Television, followed by the quartet of doc-focused digital channels owned by High Fidelity HDTV; a deal that closed just two weeks ago. Blue Ant’s other specialties are Travel + Escape, the comedy channel Bite TV and the music channel Aux.
The firm was among the few companies thought to be circling Bold. Financial details were not revealed, though sources previously told C21 it wasn’t expected to fetch a high price.
Bold has long struggled under a license that calls for programming aimed at rural Canadians and had revenue of C$4.2m (US$4.1m) for the year ending August 31, 2010, according to regulators. It reaches some 2.6 million subscribers. Its current programming includes Dead Like Me, the Canadian-made drama Terminal City and the UK import Skins.
The deal is conditional upon regulatory and other approvals.