×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

RTL Group Nears Acquisition of StyleHaul (Exclusive)

European broadcasting giant RTL Group is poised to buy full control of StyleHaul, the fashion- and lifestyle-focused multichannel network in which RTL is already an investor, sources said.

The deal is expected to be officially signed within the next two weeks, according to sources. The sale process is being handled by Guggenheim Partners; the acquisition price range under discussion is not clear.

Reps for RTL and StyleHaul declined to comment.

L.A.-based StyleHaul has raised $17 million in funding from investors including RTL Group — parent company of FremantleMedia — and Germany’s Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, which in turn owns a majority stake in RTL. Other StyleHaul backers include venture-capital firm RezVen Partners.

With the MCN space heating up this year, StyleHaul has been approached in recent months about a potential acquisition by suitors including Amazon, 21st Century Fox, Hearst and Condé Nast Publications, according to multiple sources. The biggest deal in the space so far has been Disney’s purchase of Maker Studios, potentially worth up to $950 million.

RTL, among its digital investments, also owns a controlling stake in YouTube video-management firm BroadbandTV and via FremantleMedia holds a stake in German MCN Divimove. Over all, Luxembourg-based RTL owns interests in 53 TV channels and 28 radio stations in 10 countries.

StyleHaul boasts a large audience in the coveted demo of teen girls and young women. The company’s network comprises 4,500-plus channels on YouTube, which collectively have more than 175 million subscribers (and more than 60 million unique monthly viewers). The MCN’s YouTube creator partners, hailing from 62 countries, include iJustine, Zoella, bubzbeauty and JLovesMac1.

Last year, the MCN landed a pact with FremantleMedia North America to jointly launch up to 10 scripted and unscripted original series over the next two years. The first under that deal was talk show “The Crew,” which debuted in January.

Earlier this year, StyleHaul hired Mia Goldwyn, VP of biz dev at Paramount Pictures’ digital division, to lead its original programming efforts as the company’s chief content officer. Her first deal was landing digital rights to “Web Therapy,” the Lisa Kudrow comedy series entering its fifth season that also has a TV window on Showtime. The company also hired former AOL advertising exec Rob DeChiaro to run the newly created StyleHaul Studios. He’s charged with overseeing branded content for marketers featuring the MCN’s roster of digital talent.

StyleHaul was founded in 2011 by president and CEO Stephanie Horbaczewski along with Allen and Aaron DeBevoise, who have launched other MCNs including Machinima and DanceOn.

More Digital

  • Nancy Pelosi

    Facebook on Defensive Over Fake Pelosi Video

    Facebook faced growing criticism this week over its decision not to remove a video that was doctored to suggest that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was intoxicated during a recent public event. The video, which has been viewed more than 2.5 million times, had been slowed down notably, giving the impression that Pelosi was slurring her [...]

  • Little-Black-Mirror-Maia-Mitchell

    Netflix Launching 'Little Black Mirror' Video Series Starring Maia Mitchell, Lele Pons, Rudy Mancuso, Juanpa Zurita and More

    To promote next month’s premiere of “Black Mirror” season 5, Netflix is launching a short video series — “Little Black Mirror,” with a cast that includes an ensemble of Latinx social-media stars. The three “mini-stories,” aimed at Spanish-speaking audiences, are inspired by the tech-dystopian universe of Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones’ anthology series. “Little Black [...]

  • Twitter

    Twitter Permanently Bans Anti-Trump Krassenstein Brothers, Who Deny They Broke Platform's Rules

    Twitter permanently suspended the accounts of Ed and Brian Krassenstein — progressive political activists famous for trolling Donald Trump and his supporters — with the company alleging the brothers used bogus accounts to amplify their reach on the platform. “The Twitter Rules apply to everyone,” a Twitter rep said in a statement. “Operating multiple fake [...]

  • Snapchat

    Snap in Talks to License Music to Let Snapchat Users Embed Songs in Posts

    Snap wants to up Snapchat’s music game. The company has been in negotiations with music companies including the big three — Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group — to license song catalogs for the Snapchat app, according to two industry sources familiar with the talks, confirming a Wall Street Journal report. [...]

  • T-mobile - Netflix - John Legere

    T-Mobile Passes Netflix Price Hike Through to Subscribers

    T-Mobile is getting ready to raise prices for subscribers who have taken advantage of its “Netflix On Us” promotion: The mobile carrier will begin charging existing customers who have participated in the promotion an additional $2 per month to account for Netflix’s recent price increase. Consumers will see their bill go up starting on 6/2. [...]

  • Oona King

    Snap Hires Google Exec Oona King as First VP of Diversity and Inclusion

    Snap continues to fill out the ranks of its revamped leadership team: The Snapchat parent tapped Oona King, most recently Google’s director of diversity strategy and a former member of British Parliament with the Labour Party, as its first VP of diversity and inclusion. King, who starts at Snap on June 11, is also the [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content