Mexico’s Grupo Televisa and U.S.-based Univision Holdings, Inc. jointly announced they’ve reached a deal to combine content and media assets of both companies “to create the largest Spanish-language media company in the world.”

Univision is acquiring Televisa’s content assets for $4.8 billion. Televisa will also contribute its four free-to-air channels, 27 pay-TV networks channels and stations, its Videocine movie studio and Blim TV subscription video on demand (SVOD) service, and the Televisa trademark. 

Those assets will merge with Univision’s holdings, which include Univision and UniMás broadcast networks, nine Spanish-language cable networks, 61 television stations and 58 radio stations in major U.S. Hispanic markets and Puerto Rico, and digital properties, including its recently launched AVOD streaming service, PrendeTV.

News content production for Mexico will be outsourced from a company owned by The Azcárraga family to guarantee that news content remains in Mexican hands and is produced in Mexico. Televisa-Univision will retain all assets, IP and library related to Televisa’s News division.

The deal is expected to close some time in 2021, subject to regulatory approvals in the United States and Mexico, and Televisa shareholder approval. The Board of Directors of both Televisa and Univision have already approved the combination.

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Univision CEO Wade Davis will lead the combined company, which will take on the name Televisa-Univision. The network identities and names will not change. Univision Network will continue to exist, owned by Televisa-Univision.

Under the terms of the deal, Univision will pay $3.0 billion in cash, $750 million in Univision common equity and $750 million in Series B preferred equity, with an annual dividend of 5.5%. As a part of the agreement, Televisa will continue to hold on to its approximately 45% equity stake in the company and retain ownership of izzi Telecom, Sky, and other businesses, as well as the main real estate associated with the production facilities, the broadcasting licenses and transmission infrastructure in Mexico.

The deal will be financed through $1.0 billion of new Series C preferred equity investment led by the SoftBank Latin American Fund, along with current Univision investor ForgeLight LLC, with participation from Google GOOG and The Raine Group; and $2.1 billion of debt commitments arranged by J.P. Morgan. 

“Televisa-Univision will emerge as the leading global Spanish-language multi-media company, uniquely positioned to capture the significant market opportunity for Spanish speakers worldwide,” says Davis, who has been bullish about Univision since before taking over the company last year. “The composition of our new investor group reflects confidence in our strategy, the progress of our digital transformation and the magnitude of the opportunity ahead of us.”

Alfonso de Angoitia will serve as Executive Chairman of the Televisa-Univision Board of Directors and Marcelo Claure, CEO of SoftBank International, who was named to Univision’s Board of Directors in November 2020, will become Vice Chairman of the Board. The Company’s Board will have 13 directors: five appointed by Televisa, three by Searchlight and ForgeLight, two by the Series C shareholders and three independent directors. At closing, the board will be composed of Emilio Fernando Azcárraga Jean, Bernardo Gómez Martínez, Alfonso de Angoitia Noriega, Marcelo Claure, Michel Combes, Gisel Ruiz, Oscar Muñoz, Maria Cristina “MC” Gonzalez Noguera, Wade Davis, Eric Zinterhofer, Jeff Sine and two additional Televisa appointees.

After closing, content production and operations in Mexico will continue to be led by Emilio Azcárraga, Chairman of the Televisa Board of Directors, and Bernardo Gómez and Alfonso de Angoitia, Televisa’s Co-Chief Executive Officers, during a transition period to ensure a smooth and successful integration.

The new Televisa-Univision entity will hold one of the largest long-form libraries of content in the world, a considerable portfolio of IP and global sports rights and a rich Spanish-language production infrastructure. In 2020, Televisa produced more than 86,000 hours of content across every genre and category, including sports and special events, dramas, newscasts, situation comedies, game shows, reality shows, children’s programs, comedy and variety programs, musical and cultural events, movies and educational programming.