RTL, AOL Time Warner nix news channel deal

Pricetag for N-TV stake said to be too high

BERLIN — Efforts by German web RTL to acquire half of AOL Time Warner’s 50% stake in 24-hour news channel N-TV have come to naught.

After months of talks, RTL head Gerhard Zeiler said the two companies failed to agree a price.

AOL Time Warner reportedly asked for DM 150 million ($70 million), a figure RTL found too steep considering N-TV’s recent 20% drop in sales and the lackluster state of the TV market.

Insiders said another big reason for the failure to reach a deal was RTL’s desire to acquire a majority stake in the channel.

N-TV shareholders Martin, Matthias and Michael Nixdorf are said to be interested in selling their 19% stake.

Publishing giant Holtzbrinck, also a N-TV shareholder (29%), is looking to up its holding and was reportedly against RTL becoming the channel’s main backer.

RTL execs played down reports that the web was desperate to add a news channel to its broadcasting group to better compete with rival Kirch Group, which launched its own news web, N24, this year.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More TV News from Variety