Discovery Closes Deal to Acquire Scripps, Tweaks Name of Newly Combined Company

This multibillion-dollar merger went much smoother than AT&T-Time Warner’s

Discovery Communications/Scripps Networks Interactive
Discovery Communications/Scripps Networks Interactive

Discovery’s near-$15 billion purchase of Scripps has officially gone through, and HGTV will soon share an office with TLC — though the building’s signage will change a bit.

The newly-combined company will simply go by Discovery, Inc. Discovery was previously Discovery Communications, Inc. and Scripps was officially Scripps Networks Interactive.

“The name change to Discovery, Inc. demonstrates a new focus on growth in the areas at which Discovery excels, telling stories across deeply loved genres and empowering superfans to explore their world wherever and whenever they choose,” the new mega-company said on Tuesday.

“Today marks another critical milestone for Discovery, as we become a differentiated kind of media company with the most trusted portfolio of family-friendly brands around the globe,” said David Zaslav, president and chief executive officer for Discovery. “As a new global leader in real life entertainment, Discovery will serve loyal and passionate audiences around the world with content that inspires, informs and entertains across every screen; deliver new ways for advertisers and distributors to reach highly targeted audiences at scale; and leverage our leadership position to create new value and growth opportunities for all of our stakeholders.”

Last week, Discovery Communications revealed what is now its senior executive team. Most notably, Rich Ross is out, and Scripps’ Kathleen Finch is taking on a big role.

Additionally, Kenneth W. Lowe, former chairman, president & CEO of Scripps Networks Interactive, will join Discovery’s board of directors, effective immediately.

The mega-merger brings together Discovery Channel, TLC, ID, Animal Planet, HGTV, The Food Network and Travel Channel, among other cable nets.

Scripps shareholders will receive approximately $90 per share, consisting of $65.82 per share in cash and 1.0584 per share in Series C Common shares of Discovery stock valued based on a volume weighted average price (subject to elections and proration), in each case in accordance with the terms of the merger agreement. This includes a cash payment of $2.82 per share in connection with Discovery’s previously announced decision to exercise in full the cash top-up option under the merger agreement.

The agreement had passed all the U.S. regulatory hurdles a week or so ago and just had Ireland left to navigate. Done and done.