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AMC Networks Restarts Talks to Acquire Starz

Stock prices shoot up on news of possible deal

AMC Networks has restarted talks to acquire Starz — which is owned in large part by billionaire John Malone — according to a report.

As a result, Starz stock skyrocketed after the normal U.S. trading day ended on Tuesday. STRZA closed at $38.79 per share at 4 p.m. ET. By 5:15, that had jumped to $42.97.  The stock has slid a bit back down to earth since then.

AMC Networks own stock (AMCX) followed a similar trajectory. It closed at $74.14 today, and rose as high as $76 apiece before beginning a dip.

Bloomberg reported the acquisition talk on Tuesday. The renewed talks “may not result in an acquisition,” the website’s unnamed sources specified.

This isn’t the first time AMC Networks has attempted a takeover of Starz. Last year the two media companies could not come to a mutual valuation. Starz’s value has increased since then to more than $5 billion from about $4 billion, partly on speculation that Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. may buy it, per Bloomberg.

AMC Networks acquired 49.9 percent of BBC America in October 2014.