"American Idol" company CKX in talks over sale

NEW YORK (Reuters) - CKX Inc, the entertainment group that has the rights to the “American Idol” TV pop contest and the Elvis Presley name, is in talks that could lead to a sale, the company said on Monday.

One Equity Partners, JPMorgan Chase & Co’s private equity arm, is interested in the company, a source familiar with the situation said. The Wall Street Journal reported on Friday that CKX was in the late stages of a deal with One Equity at about $6 a share.

A deal at that price would value the company at about $558 million.

“In response to market rumors, CKX confirmed today that it is engaged in discussions regarding a possible transaction involving the sale of the company,” it said in a statement.

CKX has proprietary rights to the Idols television brand, including the “American Idol” series in the United States and local adaptations of the television show format, according to its website. It also has rights to the names, images and likenesses of Elvis Presley and boxer Muhammad Ali.

JPMorgan declined to comment. CKX declined to give further details on the sale beyond the press release.