Starz Plummets Because Absolutely No One Wants to Buy It

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Starz (STRZA) , the premium cable-TV channel, was plummeting in New York on Thursday after a report that having failed to find a buyer, the network controlled by billionaire John Malone is considering alternatives to a sale. Englewood, Colo.-based Starz was dropping 16% to $27.76.

CBS (CBS) , Lions Gate Entertainment (LGF) , AMC Networks (AMCX) and 21st Century Fox (FOXA) were among media companies that considered acquiring Starz, a premium pay-TV channel with some 50 million subscribers, but prospective buyers determined that the asking price was too high, Bloomberg News reported.

A sale of Starz has been a source of chatter among the media press ever since Liberty Media said it would spin off the company in August 2012. The New York Post reported on Nov. 21 that CBS and Lions Gate were involved in talks to acquire Starz, using a value of about $5 billion. 

Interest in Starz was expected to be bolstered by recent announcements that HBO and Showtime will be offered as standalone Internet-based services sometime next year. Yet, having failed fo secure a buyer, Starz may seek alternative investments as well as partnerships with U.S. or European media companies, Bloomberg reported.

-- Written by Leon Lazaroff in New York

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