Stan Kroenke makes late play for Outdoor Channel

Stan Kroenke has made a late bid for Outdoor Channel and is attempting to trump an earlier offer for the US cable network.

The proposed deal follows an agreement between Outdoor Channel and InterMedia, which owns the Sportsman Channel and numerous hunting and fishing publications. It had offered Outdoor Channel shareholders US$8 per share or stock in a new, larger company.

Kroenke Sports & Entertainment registered an official bid for Outdoor Channel last week, proposing a deal that would offer shareholders US$8.75 a share, a 16.7% premium to the US$7.50 closing share price the previous day.

Outdoor Channel said the bid would be regarded as a ‘superior proposal’ and due diligence will now commence.

KSE’s bid is worth about US$227 million compared with the US$208 million InterMedia has on the table.

KSE said its bid was superior. “We believe our proposal constitutes not only an “Alternative Proposal” but also a “Superior Proposal” pursuant to your merger agreement with InterMedia Outdoors Holdings,” KSE said in its proposal to Outdoor Channel.

It went on to say it was offering a better purchase price and a better overall deal for shareholders with a similar structure to the InterMedia deal, but without “any uncertainty tied to financing”.

Kroenke already owns Altitude Sports & Entertainment, a regional television network based in Denver, Colorado and a 50% stake in World Fishing Network cable channel, which operates out of the Altitude network operating center.

His companies also own Arsenal Football Club in the UK and the early indications are that Kroenke will reject a reported £1.5 billion bid for Arsenal if, as reported, it is lodged later this week. He owns several other sports clubs and franchises including the St. Louis Rams NFL team, Colorado Avalanche NHL team, Colorado Rapids MLS soccer club and the Denver Nuggets NBA side.

“As these investments and experiences demonstrate, we are well positioned to execute on our proposal and complete a transaction with your company,” KSE said.

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