Time Warner Inc., the US-based entertainment giant, has reportedly made an acquisition bid for the struggling Australian media company Ten Networks for $589 million.
Ten Networks has received takeover bids from several companies, the latest being Time Warner. James Burtson, senior vice president of Time Warner reportedly sent a letter to Citi, the network's financial advisor, about a potential acquisition and offered to buy all shares of the company for $0.22 per share.
"We believe privatisation is the most effective way to achieve the desired return to profitability of Ten," Burtson wrote in the letter, according to the Australian Financial Review.
"Building an international footprint for our networks business is a strategic priority for Turner and we are excited about the opportunity to acquire a strong media asset in an attractive geographic market," he added.
Burtson also noted in the letter that Time Warner would need the support of the billionaire shareholders James Packer, Lachlan Murdoch, Bruce Gordon and Gina Rinehart, who own a combined 40 percent stake in the company, to go through with the deal.
Ten Networks has been struggling with losses for quite some time now. The company posted a wider-than-expected annual loss of $144.42 million, which sent its shares tumbling to trade at just $0.18, Reuters reported. Last week, Ten Networks announced that it had appointed Citigroup its financial advisor and they were reviewing "strategic options."
Since then, the company has been drawing interest from media bigwigs like Fairfax Media and Providence Equity Partners. A joint bid from Discovery Communications and Foxtel was declared a front runner at that time but no official word was given.
Citigroup has been soliciting bids from all interested parties and a late November deadline has been set for a potential finalization. Ten Networks said that price would be the major deciding factor.