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Byron Allen is purchasing the Black News Channel out of bankruptcy in hopes to revive the cable news outlet.
Allen signed off on the purchase of “substantially all” of Black News Channel’s assets for $11 million.
Allen, 60, owns Allen Media Group, a $3 billion company which comprises 32 ABC-NBC-CBS-FOX network affiliate TV stations in 20 U.S. markets. The company also owns The Weather Channel and a dozen other high-definition TV stations that serve 180 million subscribers.
Black News Channel is available in 45 million homes through providers like Comcast, Charter, and DirecTV, and Allen says his company can grow that distribution to about 80 million in the next six months.
Byron Allen Motivated to Bring Economic Equality to Black People
“I own a little less than 5% of the TV stations in the U.S.,” Allen said. “No Black person in America has ever owned more TV stations than me.”
Allen’s goal in wanting to build the world’s biggest media company is to fight for economic equality for Black people. He wants to achieve “one America” through “the four E’s”, education, equal justice, economic inclusion, and environmental protection.
“Once we achieve that, we can achieve a slice of heaven here on earth,” Allen told theGrio, a media outlet he owns. “I think if we can get people to focus on that, see that, think that, believe that and pursue that, then we have something that is really worth dedicating our lives to.”
Black News Channel Bankrupt
Shad Khan, billionaire owner of NFL team Jacksonville Jaguars, launched Black News Channel in 2020 with over $100 million invested.
After multiple gender discrimination lawsuits and low viewership numbers, Black News Channel began to close shop towards the end of 2021.
Then, in a move that shocked many, Black News Channel shut down abruptly in March 2022, with many employees not receiving their last paychecks.
With Allen’s purchase of the news channel, a reboot seems inevitable.
“We are excited to have been selected to acquire the Black News Channel, which has approximately 300 million linear and digital subscribers,” said Allen.
“Allen Media Group will deliver a best-in-class network to serve the underserved African-American community and the advertisers who want to reach this extremely valuable audience,” noted Allen. “Also, we appreciate the opportunity to provide cable operators, satellite companies, telcos, and digital platforms diversity of ownership, voices, and viewpoints on their programming lineups by having a 100 percent African-American-owned network.”