Freelancer Cari Lynn is contributing to Deadline’s coverage of the All Things D Conference.
UPDATE, 10:30 AM: Clear Channel and Ryan Seacrest have a lot to offer each other in the investment deals announced earlier today, the radio giant’s CEO Bob Pittman says. The TV personality is now “one of our biggest stars,” Pittman told a conference sponsored by All Things D. Meanwhile, the radio company — which also has big ambitions in television and live entertainment — can provide Seacrest with marketing firepower. “We have 238M (listeners) per month, with 250 city affiliates,” Pittman says. “Why can’t we use our own advertising to cross promote (Seacrest)?” Pittman remains bullish on traditional broadcast radio. “We tried HD, commercial-free radio, and no one came. Why? They’ve already got 200 choices.” What’s more, he says that fans of Internet and satellite radio also “listen to more broadcast radio than the average user.”
PREVIOUS: 3:49 AM: This morning’s announcement involves two deals: First, Bain Capital and Thomas H. Lee Partners are putting $300M into Ryan Seacrest Media, the radio and TV personality’s investment holding company. And, second, Clear Channel — which is controlled by the investment firms — is buying a minority stake in Ryan Seacrest Productions, responsible for TV shows including Keeping Up With The Kardashians. Clear Channel chief Bob Pittman has said that he wants to expand and diversify the radio giant’s media presence. The companies didn’t disclose specific terms of their deals. Here’s the release:
NEW YORK and LOS ANGELES – January 31, 2012 – Ryan Seacrest Media (RSM), an investment holding company, and Clear Channel, a leading global media company, together with Clear Channel’s majority investors Thomas H. Lee Partners (THL) and Bain Capital today announced two new investment agreements designed to drive business growth across multiple media platforms.
Funds sponsored by THL and Bain Capital have together committed up to $300 million to working with RSM to identify, acquire and develop innovative media companies, media content and other media properties that can be leveraged to support a range of media enterprises.
Under a separate agreement, Clear Channel will acquire a minority stake in Ryan Seacrest Productions (RSP), a privately-held entertainment production company. RSP produces the hit series “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” the highest-rated show on the E! network, and the spin-offs “Kourtney and Kim Take New York,” “Khloe and Lamar,” and “Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami.” RSP also produced the Emmy Award-winning ABC reality series “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.” RSP is currently producing two new reality series including “Melissa and Tye: A New Reality,” for CMT and “Shahs of Sunset,” for Bravo.
RSP will remain creatively autonomous and continue as an independently-operated entity, majority-owned by Ryan Seacrest, and managed by Seacrest as Executive Chairman, Chief Executive Officer Adam Sher and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Refold. RSP will continue to develop and produce content for network and studio partners, including NBC Universal. RSP will now also collaborate with Clear Channel on the production and distribution of both scripted and unscripted television programming as well as other media and entertainment content, leveraging the promotional reach of Clear Channel’s vast audiences, assets and relationships.
Clear Channel Chief Executive Officer Bob Pittman, THL Managing Director Richard Bressler, and Bain Managing Director Ian Loring will work with Seacrest and the RSP management team to maximize the strategic and operational value of the RSP relationship with Clear Channel. Bressler and Loring will work with Seacrest separately to maximize the RSM investment initiative.
“We aim to build Ryan Seacrest Media into a leading multi-media company with diversified assets and interests,” said Seacrest. “The entertainment industry is thriving with innovation more than ever before. I’m excited to collaborate with Clear Channel, THL and Bain Capital to seize on investment opportunities that capitalize on unique content, new technologies and distribution platforms. Bob, Rich and Ian bring a wealth of experience, ideas, and resources and it’s truly a privilege to get to work so closely with them as we embark on this new endeavor. I believe we all share a vision and a commitment to success.”
“Ryan is an unmatched creative talent with success across more media platforms and involvement with a greater variety of programming and venues than anyone else in the industry,” said Pittman. “His combination of business acumen and keen understanding of consumers and popular entertainment is an incredible asset. We’re eager to collaborate with him in developing new and significant opportunities in the television arena in a way that can maximize our relationships with music and other talent, bring greater benefits to our advertisers, and further build Clear Channel’s singular ability to deliver local, mobile and social execution across a truly national audience base.”
“Ryan Seacrest is not only an enormous talent as an individual, but a leading business visionary who has his finger on the pulse of the evolving dynamics in the media industry. He and his business initiatives are quite literally driving the future of how media can create value in ways never dreamed of in prior decades, and we are pleased to be his partner, both through Clear Channel as well as through our separate, new and exciting media property investment initiative,” said Bressler. “Putting the scope, scale, reach and resources of Clear Channel and the THL and Bain teams behind Ryan and his team underscores what he can achieve in this industry.”
Seacrest is the host and executive producer of “On Air With Ryan Seacrest,” the morning drive-time show on Clear Channel Radio’s KIIS 102.7 FM in Los Angeles, which is syndicated on over 150 stations in North America with affiliates worldwide. Seacrest is also host of radio’s iconic “American Top 40,” a weekly countdown show syndicated by Clear Channel’s Premiere Networks. Additionally, Seacrest creates and delivers content for distribution through Clear Channel’s broadcast and digital radio platforms on both a local market and national basis, and serves as a spokesperson for Clear Channel.
During the past year, Seacrest was involved in the development and execution of key projects for Clear Channel such as the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas, the biggest live concert festival in radio history. Seacrest hosted the incredibly successful two-day music event in September 2011, which sold out in ten minutes and earned universal rave reviews.
In addition, Seacrest hosts the most popular show on television, Fox’s “American Idol”; serves as an executive producer and co-host of E! News and Red Carpet specials; he is an Emmy-winning producer of reality television (“Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution”); and serves as an executive producer and co-host of “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest.”
Creative Artists Agency (CAA), Craig Jacobson at Hansen, Jacobson, Teller, Hoberman, Newman, Warren & Richman, L.L.P. and Greg Akselrud at Stubbs, Alderton and Markiles negotiated the transactions on behalf of Ryan Seacrest and Ryan Seacrest Media.