Exclusive: CBS considers bid for Dick Clark Productions
(Reuters) - CBS Corp is considering a bid for Dick Clark Productions and would join other bidders including "American Idol" host Ryan Seacrest, who have until August 31 to make offers, two sources familiar with the matter said on Friday.
Entertainment company CBS is in a group of four to six bidders who have moved to a second round of discussions with Dick Clark Productions chief executive Mark Shapiro, said the sources, who are not authorized to speak publicly.
The company produces the "Golden Globe Awards" show and the New Year's Eve broadcast created by its late founder Dick Clark.
Other bidders include private equity firm Colony Capital, which owns film studio Miramax; private equity firm Guggenheim Partners; and Core Media Group, which holds the rights to the Elvis Presley brand and produces "American Idol," said one of the sources.
Shapiro and Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder, chairman of Dick Clark Productions, are asking $350 million for the company, which also produces the "American Music Awards", the "Miss Universe Pageant" and the Fox TV show "So You Think You can Dance."
Seventeen potential bidders received deal books with the company's financial information from The Raine Group, a boutique investment bank running the process, said one of the sources.
CBS considered bidding for the TV rights to the "Golden Globe Awards" in 2010, its Chief Executive Leslie Moonves has acknowledged. NBC broadcasts the show.
CBS also owns the rights to the "Grammy Awards" music show and the "People's Choice Awards."
A CBS spokesman said it was the company's policy to "not comment on rumor or speculation."
Representatives for Colony and Ryan Seacrest declined to comment, and officials at Dick Clark Productions and Core Media did not return emails and calls seeking comment.
Seacrest, 37, is building a media empire through his own production company. Aside from "Idol," he hosts a morning radio show; produces "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" for the E! cable TV network; and contributes to NBC's "Today" show and summer Olympics coverage.
In January, Thomas H. Lee Partners and Bain Capital, which control Clear Channel Communications, announced a $300 million commitment to acquire and develop properties with Seacrest's company. Clear Channel also took a minority stake in Seacrest's company.
Core Media Group is run by Marc Graboff, former chairman of NBC Entertainment and Universal Media Studios.
Colony Capital is an investment firm.
Dick Clark Productions retained Raine after a judge ruled in April in favor of the company's deal to keep the "Golden Globe Awards" it produces on NBC through 2018. The Hollywood Foreign Press Assn, which sponsors the TV and film awards, had argued that it should have been consulted before the deal was made.
Clark, who founded the company in 1957, sold his majority stake to Mosaic Media Group in 2002.
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