Reese Witherspoon on the 93rd Annual Academy Awards, April 25, 2021.
ABC | Walt Disney Tv | Getty Photos
A enterprise backed by Blackstone Group and led by leisure executives Kevin Mayer and Tom Staggs has agreed to purchase a majority stake in Reese Witherspoon’s media firm Whats up Sunshine.
The phrases of the deal weren’t disclosed, however an individual aware of transaction informed CNBC’s Julia Boorstin, it was valued at about $900 million.
That is the primary acquisition being made by the newly shaped firm underneath Mayer and Staggs, who’re each former Disney executives. The objective is to construct an unbiased leisure firm for the streaming period. In a battle for subscribers, many streaming companies are hungry for brand new content material.
Witherspoon and Whats up Sunshine CEO Sarah Harden will proceed to supervise its day-to-day operations and can be part of the yet-to-be-named firm’s board.
“Our platform will foster a uniquely creator-friendly tradition that offers elite expertise the sources they should create and capitalize on their greatest, most creative work. We sit up for backing Reese, Sarah, and their world-class group as they proceed to provide and determine dynamic, participating content material for years to return,” Mayer and Staggs stated in a launch.
Blackstone will spend $500 million on shopping for shares of Whats up Sunshine from its present buyers together with AT&T and Emerson Collective, based on The Wall Street Journal, which first reported information of the deal. Witherspoon and a few Whats up Sunshine executives and buyers will retain possession stakes within the new firm.
“In the present day, we’re taking an enormous step ahead by partnering with Blackstone, which can allow us to inform much more entertaining, impactful and illuminating tales about ladies’s lives globally. I could not be extra enthusiastic about what this implies for our future,” Witherspoon stated in a launch.
Whats up Sunshine was based by Witherspoon in 2016 to create content material targeted on feminine voices. Its productions embrace HBO’s “Large Little Lies,” Hulu’s “Little Fires All over the place” and Apple’s “The Morning Present.”
“Kevin and Tom and our companions at Blackstone see what we see – ladies’s tales matter, and we’ve financial energy as customers, creators and enterprise leaders. Their dedication permits us to double-down on our mission and our formidable progress agenda,” Harden stated in a launch.
Blackstone Group and Whats up Sunshine didn’t instantly reply to CNBC’s request for remark.
Disclosure: Comcast owns a stake in Hulu and is the mother or father of NBCUniversal and CNBC.