“AMERICAN IDOL” COMPANY MAY BE SOLD TO SHOW’S CREATOR
Simon Fuller, the creator of Britain’s Pop Idol, America’s American Idol, and their assorted offspring, is teaming up with former Barclays Capital banker Roger Jenkins to buy CKX Inc., the company that now owns American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance and other lucrative TV properties, the Wall Street Journal reported today (Friday), citing people familiar with the matter. The newspaper said that the pair, who recently set up a new venture backed by a $1-billion fund, plan to submit a bid of $600 million for the entertainment company. With shares currently trading at $4.32 each, its market capitalization amounts to just over $400 million. A rival bidder for the company is Robert F.X. Sillerman, its former chairman and CEO and, with a 20-percent stake, its largest shareholder. Another rival reportedly is producer/investor Allen Shapiro, who, according to Nikki Finke’s DeadlineHollywood.com, is planning to make a joint bid with One Equity Partners, the global private equity investment arm of JPMorgan Chase.