News Corporation and Yankee Global Enterprises Announce News Corporation’s
Acquisition of an Equity Stake in the YES Network
NEW YORK -- November 20, 2012
News Corporation (NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV) and Yankee Global
Enterprises today announced an agreement that calls for News Corporation to
acquire a 49 percent equity stake in the Yankees Entertainment and Sports
Network (YES). The YES Network delivers exclusive live local television
coverage of New York Yankees baseball and Brooklyn Nets basketball, as well as
other leading local and national sports-related programming. The YES Network
also announced a media rights agreement that will keep Yankees baseball on the
YES Network through 2042.
The media rights agreement is subject to Major League Baseball approval. The
investment is expected to close by the end of the calendar year.
The current owners: Yankee Global Enterprises, Goldman Sachs and other
investors will reduce their ownership in connection with this transaction.
After three years, News Corporation may acquire an additional stake in the YES
Network that could bring its ownership to 80 percent, at which time Yankee
Global Enterprises would retain a significant minority stake in the network.
Since its inception in 2002, YES has grown its footprint to include local
availability in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, and parts of Pennsylvania,
as well as national availability on several cable and satellite television
distributors. The network currently showcases live Yankees and Nets games to
approximately 9 million households in the teams’ television territory in the
New York area. Outside of the New York area, the YES Network also distributes
a variety of national programming to millions of homes across the country.
“We've long been a believer in the unique appeal of sports entertainment.
Partnering upstream with rights holders is even more important today in the
dynamic media marketplace in which we compete. This is a tremendous
opportunity to enhance News Corporation’s industry-leading portfolio of sports
properties, while also strategically re-entering the New York market,” said
James Murdoch, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, News Corporation. “The YES
Network represents the gold standard for regional sports networks and is a
pioneer in sports media. We look forward to working with Yankee Global
Enterprises, the network’s management team, and all of our partners to build
on a decade of success and take the YES Network to even greater heights.”
Hal Steinbrenner, Chairman of Yankee Global Enterprises, said, “This
transaction underscores the great value we and our partners created in
establishing the YES Network and sets the network on the path for even greater
achievements in the future. We are excited to have News Corporation as a
partner. Its stature and acumen in sports broadcasting on a global scale is
unmatched. We look forward to the many opportunities for growth and
development that this investment by News Corporation will bring to YES. The
Steinbrenner family expects to have a continuing, long-term ownership stake in
the YES Network and we will continue our yearly commitment of fielding a
championship caliber team for decades to come.”
Fox Sports Media Group is the leader in regional sports programming, operating
a leading array of 20 owned-and-operated U.S. regional sports networks, which
collectively produce over 5,000 live local events each year and serve as the
local TV homes to more than half of all MLB, NHL, and NBA teams.
About News Corporation
News Corporation (NASDAQ: NWS, NWSA; ASX: NWS, NWSLV) had total assets as of
September 30, 2012 of approximately US$60 billion and total annual revenues of
approximately US$34 billion. News Corporation is a diversified global media
company with operations in six industry segments: cable network programming;
filmed entertainment; television; direct broadcast satellite television;
publishing; and other. The activities of News Corporation are conducted
principally in the United States, Continental Europe, the United Kingdom,
Australia, Asia and Latin America.
Nathaniel Brown, 212-852-7746
Dan Berger, 310-369-1274
Yankee Global Enterprises
Alice McGillion, 212-843-8039
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