US broadcaster CBS Corporation has completed its takeover of Ten Network Holdings.
The deal gives the company Network Ten’s broadcast channels Ten, One and Eleven and online platform TenPlay.
In a media statement issued earlier today, Network Ten CEO Paul Anderson said: “We are delighted that the purchase of Ten by CBS Corporation, one of the largest and most successful media organisations in the world, has been finalised.
“CBS and Ten have had a strong relationship for many years. We look forward to expanding and strengthening that relationship, and working closely with CBS to build Ten’s presence in the Australian media industry.”
Leslie Moonves, Chairman and CEO of CBS Corporation, said: “The closing of this acquisition marks the beginning of an exciting opportunity to build and expand on our close working relationship and the great legacy of Network Ten in Australia, and to paving the way for further multiplatform distribution opportunities for CBS content. I believe our ownership helps ensure that Network Ten’s business will grow long-term, while also benefiting the Australian Media sector as a whole. We look forward to welcoming Ten and its employees to the CBS family.”
The takeover ends months (if not years) of instability surrounding the network’s ownership — with Ten going into receivership earlier this year — and finances, with the struggling network now essentially debt-free under its new owner.
CBS, which operates the #1 broadcast network in the US, has already signalled that it intends to launch its streaming service CBS All Access in Australia.
So far it remains to be see what other plans CBS has for the network, although it was reported to have been in support of Ten’s big-budget signing last month of former Today co-host Lisa Wilkinson. Wilkinson is so far known to be joining the hosting panel on The Project and The Sunday Project next year, but any other network ventures have yet to be announced.
Ahead of the CBS takeover being confirmed, Ten has already gone to market with its planned offerings for 2018. This includes the return of existing titles including MasterChef Australia, I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, The Living Room, The Project, Neighbours, The Bachelor, The Bachelorette, Australian Survivor, Big Bash League, Gogglebox Australia, Have You Been Paying Attention?, Shark Tank, CRAM and Studio 10.
New local productions announced include Blind Date (with Julia Morris), Hughesy We Have A Problem, Bachelor In Paradise, Street Smart, Russell Coight’s All Aussie Adventures, How To Stay Married and the new local drama series Playing For Keeps.