American media tycoon John Malone wants to buy Dutch tv broadcaster SBS, according to the Telegraaf quoting ‘well-informed sources’.
Malone’s company Liberty Global already has a share of the Dutch tv market through its interest in cable company UPC. Last month, Malone was given permission by the European Commission to take over cable company Ziggo.
SBS is currently two-thirds owned by publishing company Sanoma and one-third by John de Mol’s Talpa.
De Mol made a bid of €373m for Sanoma’s shares in SBS at the end of last year, but the publisher said it was not interested in selling.
According to the Telegraaf, this standpoint has not changed. ‘Our strategy is aimed at consumer media in Finland and the Netherlands and that has not changed,’ a spokesman told the Telegraaf.
Talpa, too, says its shares are not for sale.
Malone, through Discovery Communications of which he is the majority shareholder, already owns two broadcasters in the Netherlands: Discovery Channel and TLC.
Last year, Discovery bought SBS’ Scandinavian broadcasters from the Germany ProSiebenSat1, and earlier this year it obtained a majority interest in Eurosport.