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Time Warner Makes $1.4 Billion Bid for Endemol

Time Warner Endemol Logo Split - H 2011

The entertainment conglomerate sees the reality TV powerhouse as an opportunity to add an established international TV content creator to its existing studio operations.

Entertainment conglomerate Time Warner has submitted a 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) bid for reality TV production powerhouse Endemol this week.

Sources familiar with the situation confirmed that Time Warner submitted the unsolicited bid, which included debt and equity and was first reported by Reuters.

A TW spokesman declined to comment.

One source explained that TW sees Endemol as an opportunity to add a popular international TV content creator to its strong existing studio operations. Company executives see Endemol, which has struggled with debt issues for a couple of years, similar to MGM a few years ago when the studio also explored its options amid challenges.

One person familiar with the TW bid said the company was aware that Endemol has in the past not pursued bids from the likes of Mediaset and that the debt issues could play out over a longer time frame.

Endemol is currently in the process of restructuring its 2.8 billion euros ($3.8 billion) of loans after recently failing to meet banking covenants. Lenders agreed to waive the covenant breach until mid-November, giving the company more time to address its debt situation.

Mimi Turner in London contributed to this report.