BCE To Acquire 100% Of CTV
September 10, 2010 at 7:11 AM (PT)
BELL CANADA parent BCE INC. is acquiring the 85% of CTV it does not presently own for C$1.3 billion in equity in a deal that, with C$1.7 billion in proportionate debt, is valued at C$3.2 billion. BELL owns 15% of the equity of CTV and will acquire the rest from the THOMSON family's WOODBRIDGE CO. LTD., ONTARIO TEACHERS PENSION PLAN; and the TORONTO STAR's parent TORSTAR CORP. In a separate deal, WOODBRIDGE will take control of the national newspaper THE GLOBE AND MAIL, with CTV retaining a 15% equity position; WOODBRIDGE has had an indirect interest in the paper since 1980.
"Acquiring CTV's range of premier video content enhances BELL's execution of our strategic imperatives by leveraging our significant broadband network investments, accelerating BELL's video growth across all three screens -- mobile, online and TV -- and achieving a competitive cost structure. 100% ownership of CTV enables BELL to maximize strategic and operating synergies with CTV, including the efficiency of our content and advertising spend," said GEORGE COPE, Pres./CEO of BELL CANADA and BCE. "Our industry is changing rapidly. Increasing vertical integration across the communications landscape, ongoing technological advancement and key regulatory developments introduce new opportunities with the ownership of high-demand content by BELL. Our acquisition of CTV more than levels the playing field in our increasingly competitive industry."
CTV CEO IVAN FECAN added, "BELL's acquisition of CTV underscores the strength of our #1 conventional, specialty, digital and radio assets, and our leading creative and content management expertise. In today's digital age, it is extremely important to be part of a vertically integrated company that can take advantage of video delivered on multiple screens. CTV has emerged stronger than ever from the recession, and is now perfectly positioned to take advantage of an improving economy. This is the right deal at the right time."
CTV owns CHUM RADIO and its 34 radio stations across CANADA as well as the CTV television network and 27 TV stations; 30 cable specialty channels; and digital assets related to the TV and radio operations. BELL operates telephone, wireless communications, high-speed Internet, digital television and IP-broadband and ICT (information and communications technology) services nationwide.