Macrovision sells magazine to Capitol group

TV Guide has finally been unloaded to a private equity buyer.

Macrovision sold the magazine to OpenGate Capital, announcing the deal after the stock market had closed Monday. The deal is expected to close Dec. 1, with no shareholder vote required.

It was not immediately clear what OpenGate’s ownership would bring in terms of changes to a magazine that has already changed radically over the past four years. One intriguing deal point is that the magazine’s increasingly trafficked website will remain with Macrovision, presenting a challenge of co-existence to both owners.

In terms of the balance sheet, the magazine had already been classified as a “discontinued operation,” meaning the sale will result in no gain or loss being recorded.

The odyssey of TV Guide through a succession of corporate owners in recent years reached a new level with the entry in the spring of Macrovision, a Silicon Valley tech company with no history in the media or publishing worlds. The company was solely interested in TV Guide’s programming guides and what is known as “connected services” — basically, everything but the traditional-media vestiges of the brand.

The magazine and TV Guide cable channel were shopped actively as soon as Macrovision took the reins. The channel still has not found a buyer, though three firms have been taking a close look (Daily Variety, Sept. 29).

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