When you run a cable company, you have to make sure you’re got current and satisfactory distributions deals with all of your networks. Dish seems to be bad at this, since almost yearly the IFC or AMC airwaves are inundated with “Call Dish now to make sure you don’t lose this network” ads. Premium cable channels are one thing, but networks are another, so it’s good that Comcast has reached a new deal with Fox to keep all of their networks (even though the deal also creates a completely unnecessary new sports channel). And Comcast recently reached similar long-term deals with CBS, the Walt Disney Company, and NBC. Those NBC negotiations must have really been tough, since Comcast is about to own 100% of NBCUniversal.
According to Business Insider, Comcast is buying the remaining 49% of NBCUniversal that is still owned by GE for $16.7 billion (or just about $5400 for every person who watched Do No Harm. Seems like a good deal). In addition, NBCU will buy “from GE the properties used by NBCUniversal at 30 Rockefeller Plaza and CNBC’s headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, NJ for approximately $1.4 billion.” Just in case you were wondering if they’d start shooting SNL in the Comcast Building.
And if those numbers don’t mean anything to you, and you really want to feel very, very small compared to these giant corporations, the deal was completed with “$11.4 billion of cash on hand.” Oh, and in case you’re thinking to yourself that a cable company having 100% ownership of a major network seems like something they could take advantage of, remember that no one watches NBC.