People/Biz

Discovery completes acquisition of Scripps

As expected, Discovery Communications has completed its US$14.6 billion acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive. Moving forward, the combined company will be officially known as Discovery, Inc. “Today [March 6] marks another ...
March 6, 2018

As expected, Discovery Communications has completed its US$14.6 billion acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive. Moving forward, the combined company will be officially known as Discovery, Inc.

“Today [March 6] marks another critical milestone for Discovery, as we become a differentiated kind of media company with the most trusted portfolio of family-friendly brands around the globe,” said David Zaslav (pictured), president and CEO for Discovery, in a statement.

According to a statement from Discovery, the rebrand to Discovery, Inc. “demonstrates a new focus on growth in the areas at which Discovery excels” across various genres.

Former chairman, president & CEO of Scripps Networks Interactive Kenneth W. Lowe will join Discovery’s board of directors, effective immediately.

In anticipation of the merger of the two companies, Discovery revealed its post-merger leadership team on March 1. Scripps’ chief programming, content & brand officer Kathleen Finch was named chief lifestyle brands officer for the combined company overseeing a slew of channels including HGTV, Food Network, TLC, ID and more.

The restructure also saw the exit of Rich Ross, group president of Discovery Channel and Science Channel. TLC president Nancy Daniels was tapped for the new role of chief brand officer, Discovery and factual. In her position, Daniels is charged with all creative and brand strategy, development, production, marketing and day-to-day operations for Discovery and Science Channel.

Discovery announced in July 2017  that it had reached a definitive agreement to acquire Scripps Networks in a cash-and-stock transaction that would see the company take over Scripps’ portfolio of brands.

A few months later, in November, both Discovery and Scripps shareholders approved the proposal. In February 2018, the European Commission cleared the acquisition on the condition that Discovery offer third party distributors the right, on a non-exclusive and unbundled basis, to distribute TVN21 and/or TVN24 BiS in Poland.

Furthermore, Discovery announced earlier this year its plans to move its headquarters from Silver Spring, Maryland to New York City. The company also announced its intentions to establish a national operations headquarters in Knoxville, Tennessee, contingent on the closing of the acquisition.

About The Author
Senior staff writer Frederick Blichert comes to realscreen with a background as a journalist and freelance film critic. He has previously written for VICE, Paste Magazine, Senses of Cinema, Xtra, Canadian Cinematographer and elsewhere. He holds a Master of Arts in film studies from Carleton University and a Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia.

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