Warner acquires Turkish streaming service provider BluTV.

Last Updated: 2. Januar 2024By

Before I explain more about the takeover of the Turkish streaming service BluTV by Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD), I would like to start with a brief review of global mergers and acquisitions (M&A) in the past year.

Even though I was able to present you with spectacular takeover deals in 2023, the global M&A business was significantly weakened last year. The leading financial news agency Bloomberg referred to 2023 as „the worst year for mergers and acquisitions in a decade.“

The total value of all mergers and acquisitions worldwide in 2023, according to Bloomberg, decreased by about a quarter to $2.7 trillion. This is the lowest annual value since 2013. The reason for this significant decline is the hesitant attitude of lenders and numerous geopolitical unrest.

Nevertheless, even during the slow news period between the holidays, I was able to find an interesting takeover for you.

Warner Bros. Discovery acquires BluTV completely The leading US media conglomerate Warner Bros. Discovery, Inc. announced on Friday (December 29, 2023) that it has acquired the Turkish streaming service BluTV completely. WBD already owned 35% of the privately held Turkish streaming service since 2021.

However, what WBD had to pay for the full acquisition was not disclosed. Before I go into the background of the deal, I would like to introduce the two media companies briefly.

The companies involved in a short profile The Istanbul-based streaming service BluTV was founded in 2015 under the umbrella of Doğan Holding. BluTV offers its predominantly Turkish and Arabic-speaking subscribers live TV shows and Turkish and foreign content.

Since the beginning of the strategic partnership with WBD in 2021, content from Discovery Channel, HBO, and Cartoon Network can also be accessed through BluTV.

Warner Bros. Discovery, Inc. is a leading global media and entertainment company based in New York. The company employs approximately 37,500 people and generated annual revenue of $33.8 billion in 2022, with an operating profit (EBIT) of -$7.18 billion. USD (approximately -$6.55 billion euros).

WBD wants to expand its portfolio and focuses on streaming With this deal, WBD wants to expand its presence in the Turkish and Arabic-speaking regions, as emphasized by WBD General Manager for the Middle East and Turkey, Jamie Cooke:

„Turkey has been an important investment area for us for over 20 years. With the acquisition of BluTV, we have added the first local streaming provider in Turkey to our portfolio.“

In addition to the linguistic and spatial expansion, WBD is also focusing on the growing streaming business with this acquisition. Unlike traditional linear television, streaming services can be accessed globally and at any time.

Streaming is the future Recently, Disney CEO Bob Igor said in an interview that the linear TV business model is „definitely broken.“ This is also shown by the numbers from US market research company Nielsen. According to them, Netflix, Disney+, and other streaming services have already overtaken traditional linear television as the most common way of watching TV in July 2022.

The transition from traditional (linear) TV to streaming is also documented by numerous takeovers in the last year. For example, RTL separated from its Dutch TV group RTL Netherlands shortly before the end of the year.

Disney CEO Bob Igor also announced in an interview that he wants to sell some TV channels from the linear program. Just a few weeks later, Disney announced that it had acquired the US streaming service Hulu completely.

How the stock market reacted The announcement of the takeover of BluTV by WBD last Friday was not well received by investors. The price of WBD shares on the US technology exchange Nasdaq fell by -2.65% and was only at $11.38 at the end of trading.

The deal still has to be approved by the relevant authorities. Both companies did not disclose when the acquisition will be completed.