In a major deal, entertainer and entrepreneur Byron Allen has purchased The Weather Channel’s parent company Weather Group.
The deal, estimated at $300 million according to sources close to the situation, calls for Allen’s company Allen Media LLC to purchase the group -- which owns The Weather Channel as well as the Local Now streaming service – from NBC/Universal, The Blackstone Group and Bain Capital.
The Weather Channel – including the cable channel – was acquired by NBCU, Blackstone Group and Bain Capital in 2008 for about $3.5 billion. In 2016, TWC sold its digital assets, including the website weather.com and Weather Underground, to IBM for an estimated $2 billion.
Allen now adds The Weather Channel -- which is currently in 81.2 million homes according to Nielsen estimates -- to his stable of seven cable networks under his Entertainment Studios portfolio.
“The Weather Channel is one of the most trusted and extremely important cable networks, with information vitally important to the safety and protection of our lives,” said Allen in a statement. “We welcome The Weather Channel, which has been seen in American households for nearly four decades, to our cable television networks division. The acquisition of The Weather Channel is strategic, as we begin our process of investing billions of dollars over the next five years to acquire some of the best media assets around the world.”
TWC CEO Dave Shull added in a statement: “We are excited to join Entertainment Studios, and we are especially proud to be part of one of the largest emerging global media companies. “Byron Allen’s purchase of our innovative and forward-thinking organization will increase the value we bring to our viewers, distributors, and advertisers."
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.
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