BBC Studios Buys Out ITV Stake in BritBox International for $322 Million

The company will now be the sole owner of the U.K. streamer

Lesley Manville and Tim McMullan in "Magpie Murders"
Lesley Manville and Tim McMullan in "Magpie Murders" (BritBox)

BBC Studios has bought out ITV’s stake in the streaming service BritBox International, according to multiple media reports. The deal went for £255 million, or $322 million.

BritBox was originally founded in 2017 as a joint venture between BBC Studios, the commercial arm of the British broadcaster, and ITV with both companies owning 50% of the platform. Following this sale, BBC Studios will be the sole owner of the streamer.

As part of this new agreement, ITV Studios will continue to receive a revenue stream BritBox International. This will be similar to the what the programmer receives from other companies for licensing its content and extending licensing agreements.

“The transaction will provide net proceeds including loan repayments and accrued dividends and after tax of around £235 million,” the companies told the press.

The sale aligns with ITV’s strategy of focusing on its U.K. advertiser-funded streaming service, ITVX, as well as its global studios division. “The board intends to return the entire net sale proceeds to shareholders through a share buyback which it expects to launch imminently after the full-year results on March 7,” a representative for ITV said.

As for BritBox U.K., the dealing around that will be slightly different. Because ITV bought out the BBC’s shares of the regional streamer in 2022, BritBox U.K. will be unaffected by this most recent deal and will still feature BBC content.

BritBox currently operates in nine countries across North America, Europe, Australia and South Africa. The streamer offers subscribers British TV shows and films as well as its own original content. In 2023, the “Best of British” streamer reached three million subscribers across its eight international markets: U.S., Canada, Australia, South Africa, Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Finland.

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