TV Guide In New Deal To Sell To Lionsgate

Company had agreed to sell to Allen Shapiro

In a surprise turn around, Lionsgate has stepped in to snap up TV Guide Network and its accompanying Website, less than a month after the owners agreed to sell the entity to TV producer Allen Shapiro and One Equity Partners.

The news, released late Monday, sees owner Macrovision Solutions Corp. selling the company for $255 million to the Hollywood studio. The sale price is essentially the same as the previous deal, though one hint of why it fell through comes with the news that Macrovision was permitted to continue to solicit offers and enter into other agreements. In a statement Macrovision president and CEO Fred Amoroso, says: "This transaction improves the probability and the timing of closing the transaction." Amoroso continues, "Throughout our divestiture process, speed, certainty to close and the overall terms of the transaction have been important considerations for us." One Equity Partners could not be reached for comment.

Macrovision has now, "terminated its previous agreement to sell such properties announced on December 18." The release did not make reference to the names of the first parties to the transaction.

Lionsgate co-chairman and chief executive, Jon Feltheimer said in the release, "This is tremendous real estate, rarely available, that fits extremely well with our strategy of combining content creation, distribution and direct access to the consumer."

The deal is expected to close on Febr. 28. The transaction will be funded from Lionsgate's existing cash and available funds.