Tyler Perry and Byron Allen are reportedly among those having conversations with Paramount Global about the purchase of a majority stake in BET Media Group.
Perry, 53, already owns a minority stake in the company. He has a long history with both BET and Paramount, which could help with the purchasing process should the two sides decide to move forward. Both companies have played significant roles in Perry’s entertainment career, with BET helping to fund Perry’s Diary of a Mad Black Woman nearly 20 years ago.
From Variety’s report:
Earlier this year, Paramount announced it would be rebranding both Showtime’s linear and streaming platforms as Paramount+ With Showtime, folding the iconic brand into its priority streamer Paramount+. The move has already led to significant leadership changes and layoffs across the company.
Representatives for Paramount Global and Perry did not immediately respond to request for comment.
Paramount, like most TV entertainment companies, has been making a lot of moves lately. If they move forward with Perry, it could help in their desire to continue the rebrand of Paramount + and Pluto TV, the ad-supported streaming service that also falls within the Paramount umbrella.
Allen, 61, already a media mogul in his own right, is also “interested in buying BET, and he will be pursuing the acquisition of the network,” a spokesperson told Variety. If he’s successful, it would be Allen’s second major media acquisition in less than a year’s time.
Last summer, Allen — the founder, chairman and CEO of his expanding Allen Media Group, the parent company for recognizable entities like TheGrio and the Weather Channel — bought the Black News Channel out of bankruptcy for $11 million. At the time, Allen said he intended to grow the Black News Channel viewership from 45 million linear subscribers to 80 million linear subscribers within the next six months.
“We are excited to have been selected to acquire the Black News Channel, which has approximately 300 million linear and digital subscribers,” Allen said in a statement shortly after the purchase was completed. “Allen Media Group will deliver a best-in-class network to serve the underserved African-American community and the advertisers who want to reach this extremely valuable audience. Also, we appreciate the opportunity to provide cable operators, satellite companies, telcos, and digital platforms diversity of ownership, voices and viewpoints on their programming line-ups by having a 100% African-American owned network.”
The optics of two successful and wealthy Black people vying to buy BET, the first Black-owned cable network whose sale by founder Bob Johnson created the nation’s first Black billionaire, are simply awesome.
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Tyler Perry And Byron Allen Are Reportedly Competing To Buy Majority Stake In BET was originally published on wzakcleveland.com
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