Lionsgate CEO hopes to reveal Starz ‘plan’ by ‘end of the summer’

LR: Mike Fries & Jon Feltheimer at SeriesFest in May

Lionsgate is hoping to have details of its “plan” for Starz by the end of the summer and is looking to have wrapped up a deal by March next year, according to CEO Jon Feltheimer.

Lionsgate revealed in November that it was considering selling or spinning off cablenet and streamer Starz, which is home to dramas such as Outlander and Power.

The Feltheimer-led firm acquired Starz in 2016 for $4.4bn, but the move has been far from profitable, with the combined company now valued at just over $3bn.

Details of potential buyers for Starz emerged several weeks ago, with Roku, Canal+ and DirecTV reportedly among interested parties.

It is unknown what percentage of Starz is up for grabs but Feltheimer told analysts on a quarterly earnings call yesterday that he was aiming for “an announcement of our plan by the end of the summer,” with the transaction potentially closing around March.

Feltheimer gave no further detail on the states of the sales process, other than saying that Lionsgate was in talks with “potential strategic partners”.

Starz has been bolstered by the international growth of its Starzplay streamer, which recently joined France Télévisions and Fremantle’s French-language drama Ouija.

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