The bid by Australian billionaires Lachlan Murdoch and Bruce Gordon for the Ten Network just didn’t stack up against the offer from America’s CBS, according to administrators KordaMentha.
The American broadcast giant, a key content provider to Ten and one of its biggest creditors, is paying a minimum of $201.1 million for the Ten Network.
According to a new creditors report by administrator KordaMentha, the cash value from CBS includes $139.1 million to repay secured creditors including the Commonwealth Bank, $32 million for the creditors trust fund and $30 million in working capital.
TV pioneer Gordon last week launched a Supreme Court challenge to the sale process.
A second meetings of creditors is due next week.
In the latest report by the administrator, KordaMentha says the bid by CBS for Ten was “superior” to the joint proposal by companies associated with Gordon and Murdoch.
It says the CBS bid returns 12.43 cents in the dollar while the Gordon/Murdoch offer was 10.58 cents, as this analysis by KordMentha shows:
KordaMentha says the decision to go with CBS followed “a thorough review and comparison of the two final bids”.
“Both the receivers (PPB Advisory) and the administrators, having regard to their respective obligations, concluded that the CBS proposal was superior to the competing proposal for creditors generally,” KordaMentha writes in the report.
News Corp co-chair Murdoch and WIN Corporation owner Gordon, both significant shareholders in Ten, had been expected to end up as full owners.
The network went into voluntary administration in June after the two shareholders refused to increase or extend a $200 million credit facility past December.
Ten in April posted a loss of $232.19 million for the half year in a tough advertising market. At that time, the company said the current debt facility was drawn down by about $66.2 million.
Earlier in the year analysts described the network as “un-investible” for most investors because of operating losses and funding concerns.