Univision Talking With CBS, Time Warner: Report

Univision Communications, which dominates the Spanish-language TV business, has discussed selling itself to media companies including CBS and Time Warner, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Univision, which was bought in 2007 by a group led by Haim Saban, is seeking more than $20 billion for the company, according to the report.

The company had been expected to take the company public next year as a way to cash its investors out.

A deal with another media company would continue a trend of consolidation in the TV business, where station groups and distributors have been merging, putting pressure on programmers to maintain leverage by getting larger.

In April, Univision CEO Randy Falco acknowledged that the acquisition of Time Warner Cable by Comcast would have an impact on it, partly because Comcast also owns Univision’s rival, Telemundo.

"Based on what I have seen and heard, I am still concerned that the proposed merger could be bad for competition and most importantly, bad for Hispanic audiences," he said during Univision’s earnings call.

Comcast is not carrying Deportes Univision, the 40 million-subscriber sports channel now loaded with World Cup programming. “Hispanic audiences are also embracing this network as you can see from the ratings. So either Comcast doesn't understand that soccer is a passion point for Hispanics or they don’t support competitors who have competing services,” Falco said.

Univision, Time Warner and CBS did not comment to the WSJ.

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.