AT&T sells Chilevisión to ViacomCBS Networks International

AT&T has agreed to sell WarnerMedia’s Chilevisión, a Spanish-language programmer, to ViacomCBS Networks International.

Financial terms for the deal were not disclosed but ViacomCBS said the purchase price of the acquisition will be financed by its existing cash balances. The companies did not provide an anticipated closing date for the transaction.

VCNI said the deal will expand its footprint in Latin America and add to its streaming business with a library – which includes sports, entertainment and news – and pipeline of Spanish-language content for Paramount+ and Pluto TV. The company also said the deal will “strengthen and expand its presence in the Southern Cone of Latin America by creating an aligned commercial, content and distribution strategy.”

That distribution strategy will include Chilevisión’s free-to-air television network, which VCNI said attracted approximately 24% share of viewership in 2020, based on figures from IBOPE.

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“Latin America is one of the world’s fastest-growing streaming markets, and Chilevisión will be a key driver of our accelerated streaming strategy in the region,” said Raffaele Annecchino, president and CEO at ViacomCBS Networks International, in a statement. “Chilevisión is an extraordinary addition to our existing business in Latin America and will fortify ViacomCBS’s position as a premier Spanish language content producer.”

Chilevisión will be led by Juan “JC” Acosta, president of ViacomCBS International Studios and Networks Americas. The acquisition joins the ViacomCBS Americas portfolio, which includes the Paramount+, Pluto TV, Noggin, the ViacomCBS International Studios production hub, Telefe and pay TV networks including MTV, Nickelodeon, Nick Jr. and Comedy Central.

ViacomCBS relaunched CBS All Access as Paramount+ last month in the U.S. and simultaneously began an international rollout. On March 4, the service debuted in 18 Latin American countries and Canada before expanding to the Nordics on March 25. Paramount+ will arrive in Australia later this year with a rebrand and expansion of 10 All Access.

For AT&T, the deal represents more progress toward reducing debt by selling assets. The company recently announced to deal to spin off its linear video businesses and to sell Crunchyroll, its anime streaming service.