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E.W. Scripps, a notable local TV broadcaster in the United States, is currently in the process of evaluating inbound interest in acquiring Bounce TV, its over-the-air network targeted towards African American audiences. This move was revealed by Scripps CEO Adam Symson in an exclusive interview with CNBC. Paramount Global had previously considered selling Black entertainment company BET Media Group, attracting interest from various parties, many with Black leadership. Some of these interested parties have now approached Scripps regarding the potential acquisition of Bounce TV, signaling a significant development in the media landscape.

In the event that Scripps decides to move forward with a deal, the company is aiming for a price tag in the hundreds of millions, as suggested by sources familiar with the matter. With Scripps currently trading at approximately $3.70 per share and a market valuation of around $315 million, the potential sale of Bounce TV could have a considerable impact on the company’s overall financial standing, especially considering the decline in its stock value by over 50% this year. As discussions progress, the timeline for a potential deal is projected to fall around mid-year or the third quarter, offering a glimpse into the strategic planning behind this transaction.

The media landscape is undergoing significant shifts, with advertising agencies and big brands increasingly focusing on minority-controlled businesses. This trend could bolster the value of media assets transitioning from conglomerates to Black owners, shedding light on the strategic significance of Bounce TV within this context. Additionally, the acquisition of Bounce TV could position it as a lucrative platform for showcasing a diverse range of content from Black creators, capitalizing on the growing demand for inclusive entertainment options.

Bounce TV, launched in 2011, offers a mix of syndicated shows, movies, and original content tailored to African American audiences. The network has seen a rise in ratings in recent years, outperforming traditional media channels despite industry challenges. With popular series like “Johnson” and the upcoming comedy show “Mind Your Business,” Bounce TV continues to engage its viewers across linear, connected TVs, pay TV, and streaming platforms. Symson highlighted the network’s strong performance, noting a 14% increase in linear viewership and a 9% growth in connected TVs during the first quarter, reflecting its ability to resonate with a diverse audience base.

While specific financial details about Bounce TV were not disclosed, Symson emphasized the network’s revenue growth since its acquisition as part of the Katz Networks deal in 2017. Scripps, which operates a sizable portfolio of stations across various U.S. markets, has capitalized on Bounce TV’s success to enhance its overall media offerings and expand its reach in key demographics. As the media landscape continues to evolve, Scripps’ strategic move to explore the sale of Bounce TV underscores the company’s commitment to innovation and diversification in a competitive industry.

E.W. Scripps’ decision to evaluate inbound interest in Bounce TV represents a strategic opportunity to capitalize on emerging market trends, diversify its media portfolio, and elevate the representation of Black voices in the industry. Through this potential sale, Scripps aims to unlock new growth opportunities, strengthen its position in the market, and further engage with diverse audiences, reflecting a forward-thinking approach to media ownership and content creation.

Business

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