More than 40 potential bidders have expressed interest in buying Dick Clark Productions with a sale price expected to be between $350 million to $400 million, TheWrap has learned.
The company is responsible for the Golden Globes show, as well as the American Music Awards and "So You Think You Can Dance."
Among the interested suitors is CORE Media Group, according to two individuals with knowledge of the sale. The company is backed by Apollo Global Management and manages brands like Elvis Presley and Muhammad Ali. Under new president Marc Graboff, the company is making a big investing push into media properties.
Colony Capital, the investment firm run by Thomas J. Barrack, Jr., has also emerged as a potential bidder, according to an individual familiar with the situation. Colony purchased Miramax with Qatar Holding and Ron Tutor for more than $660 million in December 2010, so it already has entertainment properties that could complement DCP's holdings.
Another individual told TheWrap that Ryan Seacrest Media is also interested in buying DCP.
Spokeswomen for CORE, Colony and Seacrest declined to comment.
DCP is owned by Red Zone Capital, the private equity firm run by Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder. Clark, who died earlier this year, sold his interest in the company in 2007.
Red Zone will not sell DCP if it does not receive a rich enough proposal, one individual told TheWrap. But a decision was made to engage investment bank Raine Group to explore the possibility of a sale after DCP received several unsolicited offers, the individual said.
Earlier this week, DCP said in a statement, "We have regularly received inbound interest in DCP over the last few years. At this point, no decision has been made to enter into a transaction of any kind and it’s not clear whether any transaction will happen at all.”
If it were to receive between $350 million to $400 million, that would represent a substantial return on the $175 million the investment firm shelled out in 2007 to get the production company from Mandalay Mosaic Television Group.
Owning DCP has come with some headaches, chief among them a fierce legal battle with the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the nonprofit group behind the Globes.
In 2011, the HFPA sued DCP claiming that it had signed a contract with NBC to broadcast the show through 2018 without its consent. DCP countered that that an amendment in its contract allowed it to retain the rights to the Golden Globes broadcast each time it reaches a new deal with NBC and did not need the HFPA's approval.
In April, a Los Angeles judge ruled that DCP was acting within its rights when it negotiated with NBC.
This week, the HFPA filed an appeal claiming that DCP's broad rights means that if a sale for the company goes through it will be forced to cooperate with "...some unknown company with whom HFPA never dreamed of being ‘partners.'"
Daniel Petrocelli, an attorney for the HFPA, declined to comment on the motion, but said he expects a decision on whether the court will hear the appeal to be made in the next month.