AMC Takes Stake in BBC America

AMC Networks and BBC Worldwide have announced a new long-term partnership that will see AMC take an equity stake in the cable channel BBC America.

April 6, 2018

AMC Takes Stake in BBC America

AMC Networks and BBC Worldwide have announced a new long-term partnership that will see AMC take an equity stake in the cable channel BBC America.

AMC ("The Walking Dead," "Mad Men," "Rectify") is investing $200 million to acquire a 49.9 percent stake in BBC America ("Doctor Who," "Orphan Black").

The agreement is structured as a long-term equity joint venture, with BBC Worldwide retaining 50.1 percent.

AMC Networks will have operational control of BBC America, including affiliate and advertising sales. BBC America will be managed as a standalone channel within the AMC Networks portfolio, which also includes AMC, IFC, WEtv and SundanceTV, as well as AMC Networks International, a collection of more than 60 channels distributed worldwide.

“The BBC is one of the most recognized, trusted and respected brands in the world, and we are proud to partner with it to create a content offering unmatched in the industry,” says Josh Sapan, president and chief executive officer, AMC Networks. “A combined

AMC Networks-BBC America channel group creates a powerful collection of networks that are among the most critically acclaimed, with distinct dramas and other potent content that creates a deep connection with viewers.”

The partnership builds on a history of creative collaboration between the two companies that has already resulted in the drama series "Top of the Lake" and "The Honourable Woman" as well as the upcoming "One Child."

“The U.S. is an important market for the BBC’s commercial activities. This partnership brings together the whole BBC and will help us reach new audiences in the U.S., strengthen BBC America’s position for the long term and create opportunities for the U.K. creative community," says Tony Hall, director-general, BBC, and chairman, BBC Worldwide. "We’ve already worked successfully with AMC Networks on award-winning productions of 'Top of the Lake' and the 'Honourable Woman' and this partnership means we can produce even more top-quality drama together.”

As part of the agreement, AMC Networks and BBC Television will continue to jointly pursue a number of content investment opportunities on a range of future projects, both through BBC America and other AMC Networks channels. Also included in the partnership is AMC's representation of BBC World News for U.S. distribution and domestic advertising sales.

Following completion, BBC Worldwide North America will continue as a wholly owned regional business within BBC Worldwide, focused on program and format sales and co-production relationships, scripted and unscripted production, consumer products, digital and live events.

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