Mark Burnett, Hearst Announce Joint Venture

Global venture to focus on media content, producing events around it, and spinning off television shows

Last Updated: April 11, 2011 @ 7:47 AM

Hearst and Mark Burnett announced a media, production and events-based joint venture Monday that will focus on media content, producing events around it, and spinning off television shows and other programming based on Hearst brands.

The deal includes Hearst acquiring a substantial interest in Burnett's production business. No terms were disclosed.

We see the media production business as a great opportunity to leverage Hearst's brands across platforms and continue our move into new businesses," Hearst CEO Frank A. Bennack, Jr. "We see this as a growth opportunity for us that diversifies our revenue streams and we are happy to have Mark — a visionary in the reality genre — as a partner."

Scott Sassa, president of Hearst Entertainment & Syndication, will lead the new venture's board of directors along with Burnett (above).

"Hearst's iconic brands will be an incredible creative addition for me and will translate perfectly into the vision for the future that Frank, Scott and I all share. In fact, we already have great projects in the works," Burnett said.

Burnett's shows include "Survivor," "The Apprentice," and "Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader?" as well as the upcoming "The Voice" on NBC. 

Hearst owns 15 daily and 38 weekly newspapers, nearly 200 magazines including Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan and O, The Oprah Magazine; and 29 television stations. It also has ownership in leading cable networks, including Lifetime, A&E, History and ESPN.

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