BET Takes On Restaurant Partners

Continuing the overhaul of Black Entertainment Television properties, BET
Holdings Inc. chairman and CEO Robert L. Johnson announced a partnership Tuesday
with a Miami-based restaurant company to manage two of Johnson's four
BET-oriented restaurants.

Restaurateurs Delius Shirley and Cindy Hutson will partner with Johnson to
own and manage Johnson's BET on Jazz Supper Club in Washington, D.C. -- which
will close immediately for renovations -- and Tres Jazz Restaurant in Las

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Johnson retains ownership of the BET Soundstage Restaurant in Largo, Md., and
BET Soundstage Nightclub on Pleasure Island at the Walt Disney World Resort in
Orlando, Fla.

Johnson announced the sale two weeks ago of a majority interest in BET Action
Pay-Per-View to TVN Entertainment Corp. -- the last remaining cable-network
property not purchased by Viacom Inc. as part of its $3 billion BET

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.