Discovery Communications will take full ownership of sports channel group Eurosport, it was announced today (July 22), by acquiring the remaining 49% stake currently held by TF1 Group, left over following the global media company’s purchase of a controlling stake in 2014.
The remaining stake will be sold to Discovery Communications at a cost of €491 million, or approximately US$535 million.
“In 2012, we began our investment with a 20% stake in Eurosport and increased that investment to 51% more than a year ago,” said Discovery Communications president and CEO David Zaslav (pictured) in a statement. “Taking full control of Eurosport is the culmination of our commitment to strengthening Eurosport as a premier sports brand and fully integrating this business within Discovery’s unmatched global portfolio. I would like to thank TF1 for being great partners to us on this journey for the past few years.”
The flagship Eurosport network reaches 133 million homes across 54 countries in 20 languages. Eurosport’s brands and platforms also include: Eurosport 2, which reaches 69 million households across 51 countries; Eurosport HD, available in 32 million homes in 48 countries; Eurosport Asia-Pacific, which reaches 16 countries; and 24-hour news channel Eurosportnews, available in 48 countries.
Last month, it was announced that Discovery and Eurosport inked an exclusive European multi-platform broadcast and distribution deal with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for four Olympic Games between 2018 and 2024.
The finalizing of the Eurosport acquisition also includes a provision for TF1 to buy back Discovery’s 20% interest in TV Breizh, Histoire, and Ushuaïa TV for €15 million. Both deals are expected to close at the beginning of the fourth quarter.