You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Initial bids in for MGM

Studio moving on to phase 2

MGM had received several bids as Friday’s deadline arrived for initial offers for the troubled studio.

The company, in a two-sentence statement issued Friday afternoon, didn’t disclose the identity of any bidders, nor did it disclose a timeline. The Lion, saddled with a crushing $3.7 billion debt load, put itself up for sale on Nov. 13.

MGM is in the process of receiving indications of interest from potential bidders,” the statement said. “Once the company has completed reviewing the initial bids, it will begin the second phase of its strategic review process.”

Time Warner, India’s Reliance Entertainment, Lionsgate, AT&T, Liberty Media, Summit Entertainment and News Corp. are among the most likely bidders. More than a dozen companies have signed nondisclosure agreements allowing them to review MGM’s internal financials — including News Corp., which had held back due to concerns about the terms until working out a revised pact Friday, according to a person familiar with the situation.

Expectations are that a sale isn’t imminent since initial bids will probably come in well under the unofficial target range of $2 billion-$2.5 billion. But the offers will aid MGM management and its investment banker, Moelis & Co., in ascertaining whether to proceed with a second round of bids as well as whether MGM should attempt to restructure its debt.

The first round of bids are nonbinding. MGM’s assets include the 4,000-title library, the right to make new James Bond and Pink Panther movies, the Lion logo, the United Artists operations and half ownership of the two “Hobbit” movies.

The 140 MGM debtholders have agreed to forgive debt payments through Jan. 31, and it’s expected they’ll grant another “forbearance” extension to allow the process to play out further. MGM’s also facing the repayment of its $250 million revolving credit line in early April.

The Lion was taken private in 2005 by a consortium led by Sony, Providence Equity Partners, Texas Pacific Group and Comcast, with the group paying $2.85 billion and assuming $2 billion in debt as part of the purchase.

Popular on Variety

More Scene

  • Laverne Cox Charlie's Angels

    How Laverne Cox Landed a Cameo in Elizabeth Banks' 'Charlie’s Angels'

    Laverne Cox officially earned her wings, scoring a role in Sony’s “Charlie’s Angels.” But she revealed her cameo almost didn’t happen. When the Emmy-nominee heard that Elizabeth Banks was directing the film, the longtime fan of the franchise (and of Banks herself) reached out about being part of the project. Cox had previously worked with [...]

  • Lena Waithe'The Inheritance' Broadway play opening,

    Lena Waithe, Anderson Cooper Attend Broadway Opening of 'The Inheritance'

    “The Inheritance” pulls viewers in many directions — toward pain and hope, trauma and healing. It’s what brought stars like Andy Cohen, Anderson Cooper, Sarah Jessica Parker, Matthew Broderick and Lena Waithe to Broadway on Sunday — a chance to heal, to remember and grieve. Also in attendance for the premiere at the Barrymore Theater [...]

  • Cybill ShepherdTrevorLIVE, Show, The Beverly Hilton,

    'The L Word' Co-Stars Cybill Shepherd and Jane Lynch Reunite at TrevorLive

    Fans of Showtime’s “The L Word” will be happy to hear that Cybill Shepherd eagerly reprised her on-screen romance with former co-star Jane Lynch on Sunday night at the TrevorLive Gala at the Beverly Hilton in Los Angeles. While accepting the champion Award, Shepherd kissed Lynch not one, but twice. The “Moonlighting” star was recognized [...]

  • Rami Malek, Robert Pattinson and John

    Robert Pattinson Praises Fans for Raising Funds for Go Campaign: ‘It’s So Sweet’

    Robert Pattinson is giving back, but he’s even more impressed that his friends and fans are joining him in the fight. “It’s amazing,” Pattinson told Variety on the black carpet outside Neuehouse in Hollywood at the Go Campaign’s annual gala. “And they’ve done it every year. It’s kind of — it’s so sweet and I [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content