AMC Networks Takes 49.9% Stake in BBC America and Operational Control

Ties BBC America to AMC Channels Such as AMC, IFC and Sundance

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Peter Capaldi as Doctor Who.
Peter Capaldi as Doctor Who. Credit: BBC America

AMC Networks is investing $200 million for a 49.9% stake in BBC America, home of shows like "Orphan Black" and "Doctor Who," AMC said on Thursday.

As part of the deal, AMC Networks will have operational control of BBC America, a cable network part of BBC Worldwide, including affiliate and advertising sales and "will run it consisted with BBC's editorial standards and policies." BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of British Broadcasting Corporation, will retain a 50.1% stake.

The deal ties BBC America to AMC Networks' portfolio of channels, which includes AMC, IFC, We TV and SundanceTV, as well as AMC Networks International.

"A combined AMC Networks-BBC America channel group creates a powerful collection of networks that are among the most critically-acclaimed, with distinct dramas and other potent content that creates a deep connection with viewers," Josh Sapan, president and CEO, AMC Networks, said in a statement. "Our content rises to the top on many levels and is particularly well-suited to an era of on-demand viewing and expanding consumer choice."

The two have partnered in the past for series like "Top of the Lake" and "The Honourable Woman" and worked together again on the upcoming "One Child." AMC and BBC will continue to jointly pursue content opportunities, AMC said in the statement.

BBC World News' U.S. distribution and domestic advertising sales will also be controlled by AMC.

"This partnership brings together the whole BBC and will help us reach new audiences in the U.S., strengthen BBC America's position for the long term and create opportunities for the UK creative community," Tony Hall, director-general and chairman, BBC Worldwide, said in the statement.

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