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Roku, Apollo Global said to be among potential bidders for Starz stake

Starz’s US originals include The White Queen

Roku and Apollo Global Management are reportedly among the bidders for a minority stake in Lionsgate-owned cablenet and streamer Starz.

The US streaming device and smart TV provider has teamed up with the private equity firm that once co-owned Endemol Shine Group to launch a joint bid, according to The Wall Street Journal.

They are among multiple undisclosed bidders for a minority stake in Starz, whose parent company, Lionsgate, has been exploring spinning it off or selling it since late last year.

The company issued a filing in November confirming that its board of directors has authorised its management team to “explore potential capital markets alternatives” for Starz, “including, but not limited to, a full or partial spin-off, split-off, issuance of a tracking stock or other transactions.”

It comes as Roku pushes further into original programming for its AVoD service, while Apollo was bolstered by the sale of its stake in Endemol Shine Group to Banijay in 2020.

Starz’s US originals include Outlander, The White Queen, Power and P-Valley, while its international streaming business StarzPlay, which has upwards of 7.5 million subscribers and is available in 60 countries, is in the midst of an originals push.

This has led to StarzPlay teaming up with the likes of TF1, StudioCanal, Canal+, Mediapro and Fremantle on French- and Spanish-language originals such as A French Case, All Those Things We Never Said, Express and Nacho Vidal: An Industry XXXL.

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