Yahoo Pursued Scripps Networks Acquisition: Report

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Yahoo engaged Scripps Networks Interactive last year about a possible acquisition, according to a report Thursday in Business Insider.

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is interested in potentially taking the riches her company reaped from the Alibaba IPO and funneling them into cable networks, the report suggests. Yahoo approached SNI at some point in 2014 about purchasing Food Network, and the conversation eventually extended to acquiring the rest of a portfolio that also includes HGTV and Travel Channel.

Yahoo may have also approached Time Warner about acquiring CNN. But the report doesn’t suggest that either of these potential acquisitions are still in active discussions.

SNI has been mentioned as a potential takeover target in recent years, particularly in anticipation of the kind of industry consolidation that could occur should regulators approve the Comcast-Time Warner Cable and DirecTV-AT&T deals. Discovery Communications held preliminary talks with Scripps in late 2013, but a deal didn’t materialize.

The author of the report on Yahoo-Scripps is Nicholas Carlson, who recently published the book “Marissa Mayer and the Fight to Save Yahoo.”

A rep for Yahoo declined to comment, citing company policy on addressing rumors or speculation.