Alliance Atlantis, the Canada-based TV production giant (half-owns the CSI franchise) is being bought out by Canadian media company CanWest Global and Goldman Sachs for a total of $1.95 billion. The deal, which must meet regulatory approval, is expected to close by the summer.
Alliance owns cable TV specialty channels including Showcase, Life, Food and History TV in Canada, as well as a 50 percent stake in the big CSI franchise. Alliance’s stake in CSI will be fully owned by GS. As part of the deal, CBS will become the international distributor of the CSI franchise.
The company has been trying to kickstart its digital media business: CSI is already available in the U.S. as a digital download to iPods, and Alliance is working with co-owner CBS to develop mobile “CSI” episodes for worldwide sale.
Some more details in the release here.