Virgin Media flogs off UKTV stake for £339m
Dave gobbled by Food Network
Virgin Media isn't in the TV content business anymore. Today the cable operator confirmed it has a buyer for its share of the UKTV company, for £239m plus £100m to buy up outstanding debt and equity. The buyer is US company Scripps Networks Interactive, responsible for the Food Network.
The other half of UKTV is owned by the BBC's commercial division, BBC WorldWide, which maintains its stake. The station was launched in 1997 to crank extra pennies from popular Beeb and independent content. Its channels include Dave – formerly UK Gold 2 – Eden and Good Food.
Virgin got very shirty a year ago when the news got out, via The Sunday Times, but it was on the cards. Virgin flogged off the LivingTV Group, formerly Virgin Media Television, for £160m to BSkyB. ®