Please wait...
Please wait...

Paramount Global reportedly enters exclusive talks to sell BET for $1.6bn

Paramount Global has reportedly entered exclusive talks to sell Black Entertainment Network (BET) to a group consisting of BET CEO Scott Mills and US private equity firm CC Capital.

Scott Mills

According to a report in Bloomberg, the group has made an offer between US$1.6bn and US$1.7bn.

BET has been the subject of sale speculation for nearly two years as Paramount Global has offloaded various assets including Simon & Schuster, mixed martial arts promotion Bellator and its minority stake in Indian media company Viacom18.

Most recently, in December 2023 it emerged that a management-led investor group including Mills and CC Capital head Chu was in discussions to acquire BET. At the time, the price tag being discussed was around US$2bn, according to reports. That came after Paramount Global called off a prior sale process last August.

Other potential suitors previously discussed in connection with an acquisition of BET include Tyler Perry, Byron Allen and Sean ‘P Diddy’ Combs.

Assets sitting under BET, which caters to African-American audiences, include cable networks BET and VH1, streaming service BET+ and BET Studios.

Following Bloomberg’s report on Tuesday, Paramount Global shares ticked up by almost 6% to US$10.72 per share.

Renewed BET sale talks comes on the heels of news that Paramount Global’s long-negotiated sale to suitor Skydance Media was off.

In the time since, the newly installed co-CEO trio, consisting of George Cheeks, Chris McCarthy and Brian Robbins, have outlined plans for the company to go it alone without being acquired.

A month ago, the co-CEOs outlined a three-pronged strategy that will involve “transforming” its streaming business, finding at least US$500m in annual savings and divesting several assets to pay off debt.

At a town hall meeting last week, the co-CEOs told employees that the Shari Redstone-controlled company had hired bankers to sell certain unspecified assets as it looks to reduce debt and improve its balance sheet.

Please wait...