Discovery Communications and Scripps Networks Interactive  have signed a definitive agreement for Discovery to acquire Scripps in a cash-and-stock transaction valued at $14.6 billion, or $90 per share, based on Discovery’s Friday, July 21, closing price. The purchase price represents a premium of 34% to Scripps’ unaffected share price as of Tuesday, July 18, 2017. The transaction is expected to close by early 2018, reports TVNewsCheck.  The report added, in part:

““This is an exciting new chapter for Discovery,” said David Zaslav, president-CEO, Discovery Communications. “Scripps is one of the best run media companies in the world with terrific assets, strong brands and popular talent and formats. Our business is about great storytelling, authentic characters and passionate super fans. We believe that by coming together with Scripps, we will create a stronger, more flexible and more dynamic media company with a global content engine that can be fully optimized and monetized across our combined networks, products and services in every country around the world,”

 ““Through the passion and dedication of our incredible employees, and with the support of the Scripps family, we have built a lifestyle content company that touches the lives of consumers every single day,” said Kenneth W. Lowe, chairman, president and CEO, Scripps Networks Interactive. “This agreement with Discovery presents an unmatched opportunity for Scripps to grow its leading lifestyle brands across the world and on new and emerging channels including short-form, direct-to-consumer and streaming platforms.”

“Together, Discovery and Scripps will produce approximately 8,000 hours of original programming annually, be home to approximately 300,000 hours of library content, and will generate a combined 7 billion short-form video streams monthly.

“Combined, Discovery and Scripps will have nearly 20% share of ad-supported pay-TV audiences in the U.S., the companies said. Additionally, the combined company will be home to five of the top pay-TV networks for women and will account for over 20% share of women watching primetime pay-TV in the U.S.”

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