Steve Harvey and Mark Cuban are teaming up, as Anthem Sports & Entertainment announced Monday that it has bought a majority interest in Cuban’s HDNet LLC -- which distributes the cable networks AXS TV and HDNet Movies.
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Anthem also announced that Harvey will be both an investor and a strategic partner who sits on its board of directors.
Anthem, a media company featuring sports and entertainment programming, is already available in 120 countries and now, via this deal, will be able to have its content seen in 150 million homes.
"We are very excited to add these two successful channels to our portfolio," said Leonard Asper, CEO, Anthem Sports & Entertainment, said in a statement. "The music, sports and entertainment communities served by these channels are a natural extension and perfect complement to our existing properties." Beyond that, Anthem will now have access to AXS TV's "extensive library of owned programming, including wrestling, MMA, and entertainment content."
“Anthem’s combination of targeted brands, enthusiastic audiences, operational expertise, international footprint and vision makes them an ideal partner to take AXS TV and HDNet Movies to their next levels,” Cuban said.
FILE - In this Aug. 3, 2017 file photo, host/executive producer Steve Harvey participates in the "Steve" panel during the NBC Television Critics Association Summer Press Tour in Beverly Hills, Calif. (Photo by Willy Sanjuan/Invision/AP, File)
Cuban is continuing on as an equity partner. And Harvey, the longtime comedian and host of shows like “Family Feud,” will “enter into a strategic agreement for content development and promotion of Anthem’s portfolio of channels.”
“My team and I see great opportunity in Anthem,” Harvey said. “They have incredible shows, experiential entertainment, and a huge reach. We look forward to collaborating with Anthem on content development that will surprise and delight this newly expanded audience.”
AXS TV began as HDNet in 2001 and later became AXS TV in 2012; it can be seen in 50 million homes. HDNet Movies can be seen in 12 million homes. The deal's financial terms were not announced.