All3Media owners kick off sale process -sources

FILE PHOTO: 25th Critics Choice Awards – Show – Santa Monica, California, U.S., January 12, 2020 - Phoebe Waller-Bridge accepts the Best Actress in a Comedy Series award for "Fleabag\

By Amy-Jo Crowley

LONDON (Reuters) - The owners of All3Media have formally kicked off a sale process for the British television production company, five people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Shareholders Liberty Global Plc and Warner Bros Discovery have shared information with prospective buyers of the "Fleabag" and "The Traitors" maker this week following expressions of interest over the summer, the people said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Management presentations are being held next week, two of the people added.

All3Media did not immediately reply to requests for comment.

The company could be valued at around 1 billion pounds ($1.24 billion), according to previous reports by Reuters.

The sale of Britain's largest TV and film production company has been flagged for months.

Among those following the sale is ITV, two of the sources said. The broadcaster, which is 10% owned by Liberty Global, pulled out of talks to buy All3Media in July.

ITV declined to comment but referred to its July 6 statement, in which it said it would continue to "monitor" a possible acquisition of All3Media.

Others tracking the process are Blackstone Group, people with knowledge of the situation said, while other interested parties include the North Road Company, formed by Hollywood veteran Peter Chernin, two of them said. Providence Equity Partners, a shareholder of North Road, declined to comment.

Warner Bros Discovery and Liberty Global bought All3Media in 2014 for an enterprise value of about 550 million pounds.

Britain is responsible for 35% of its revenue, with the remainder coming from North America, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand and elsewhere, according to All3Media's reports.

($1 = 0.8076 pounds)

(Reporting by Amy-Jo Crowley, editing by Anousha Sakoui and Rosalba O'Brien)