Univision To Explore Sale Options
Univision Communications has contracted three investment banks to perform a strategic review of it assets and whether to sell the privately owned company.
Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, Moelis & Company LLC and LionTree LLC have been appointed as financial advisors as Univision’s board of directors reviews “strategic options for the company.” The company has confirmed the report from The Wall Street Journal that the current investors, led by Haim Saban, Madison Dearborn Partners and Providence Equity Partners that purchased Univision in 2006 for $13.7 billion were seeking at least a partial exit through a public stock offering or to sell the company completely.
Reports of a possible Univision sale date back to 2014 with the Hollywood Reporter noting that company turned down a $15 billion offer from John Malone, who owns SiriusXM and other media companies in 2017.
Univision Communications Inc., the leading Hispanic media company in the U.S., today confirmed that its Board of Directors is reviewing strategic options for the company.
The Board of Directors of Univision stated: “After a successful year under the leadership of our new management team, including a complete refocus on our core Spanish-language media business, it is abundantly clear that Univision’s strategic value has never been greater. The U.S. Hispanic audience represents one of the very few certain growth opportunities in today’s media marketplace, and Univision is ideally positioned. We have the top-rated local news programming in any language in many top markets, we frequently beat the “Big Four” broadcast competition in prime time, and we have a best-in-class sports franchise. This leadership position, along with the increasing recognition that the Hispanic population is driving significant U.S. economic growth, makes Univision a unique media property. The demographic and economic drivers of Hispanic consumers will spur growth in media consumption and spending for years to come, and we want Univision to be in the best position to capitalize on this historic opportunity. As the last major independent broadcast media company in the U.S., a market where scale and strength matter, Univision has the fundamentals for continued growth on its own or with a partner – and after careful consideration, the Board and management team have concluded the time is right to explore strategic options.”
Vince Sadusky, Chief Executive Officer of Univision, said, “Univision is strategically, operationally and financially strong, having refocused on serving our core consumers, as well as our advertising and distribution partners. Over the past year, Univision has gained momentum as it has divested non-core assets; strengthened programming; secured long-term distribution deals and valuable sports rights; increased investment in news, sports, local, and digital offerings; and materially strengthened its balance sheet. The current environment favors scale and cross-platform offerings, and we believe those major media companies that fail to recognize and capitalize on this unique opportunity in Spanish-language media will be left behind.”
Univision offers unparalleled access to the coveted U.S. Hispanic demographic, a population expected to grow from 57 million to 77 million by 2030. With GDP at $2.1 trillion – equivalent to 7th largest economy in the world – the U.S. Hispanic audience represents one of the few remaining growth opportunities for advertisers and distributors.
Univision is the leading entertainment, sports and news source for Hispanic America. Its broad multi-platform Spanish-language portfolio includes the #1 broadcast and cable networks, #1 website, #1 influencer network and #1 local TV and radio station group. With a diversified multi-platform media portfolio dedicated to informing, empowering and entertaining Hispanic America, Univision is the most recognized and trusted media brand among Latinos in the U.S.
There can be no assurances as to the timing or outcome of this review. Univision does not intend to disclose or comment on developments related to its review unless and until the Board has completed its review, or otherwise determined that further disclosure is appropriate or beneficial.
Univision has engaged Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, Moelis & Company LLC and LionTree LLC as financial advisors to assist with the process.