Liberty Media expands in Germany

Liberty Media - the financial benefactor behind Discovery, Court TV and STARZ!, among others - has brokered a deal with Deutsche Telekom to pick up six German cable franchises.
June 28, 2001

Liberty Media’s presence in Europe just got bigger. The U.S. communications giant has negotiated with Germany’s Deutsche Telekom to fully purchase six of DT’s nine regional cable franchises. The estimated value of the deal is in the ballpark of US$4.3 billion. While Liberty has brokered with DT for 100% ownership, the U.S. company is in talks with the U.K.’s Klesch & Co. to sell a 24.9% stake. Liberty and DT expect to reach definitive agreement by July.

Liberty holds interest in Discovery Communications (49%), Court TV (50%), STARZ! (100%) and E! Entertainment Television (10%), among other programming, communications, technology and internet businesses. A Liberty spokesperson says the focus of the German cable franchises has not yet been determined.

The six cable television regions that DT will sign over are: Hamburg/Schleswig-Holstein/Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Bremen/Niedersachsen, Rheinland-Pfalz/Saarland, Berlin/Brandenburg, Sachsen/Sachsen-Anhalt/Thüringen and Bayern. More than 10 million homes are connected to the cable network in these six regions.

About The Author
Daniele Alcinii is a news editor at realscreen, the leading international publisher of non-fiction film and television industry news and content. He joined the RS team in 2015 with experience in journalism following a stint out west with Sun Media in Edmonton's Capital Region, and with communications work in Melbourne, Australia and Toronto. You can follow him on Twitter at @danielealcinii.