Discovery Communications said it’s buying Scripps Networks for $14.6 billion

Discovery Communications announced on Monday that it is acquiring Scripps Networks Interactive for $14.6 billion.

The deal is expected to close by early 2018, and calls for Discovery to pay Scripps shareholders approximately $90 per share.

After merging, Discovery and Scripps will produce nearly “8,000 hours of original programming annually” and generate “a 7 billion short-form video streams monthly,” according to a Discovery statement. The two cable networks will gain $350 million in cost savings and will provide more international opportunities for Scripps’ business, Discovery said.

The companies said that they would create “a global leader in real life entertainment” and “accelerate growth across linear, digital and short-form platforms around the world.”

Scripps currently operates HGTV, Travel Channel and Food Network, among others, while Discovery runs channels including Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, TLC and OWN.

“This is an exciting new chapter for Discovery,” David Zaslav, president and CEO of Discovery Communications said. “Scripps is one of the best-run media companies in the world with terrific assets, strong brands, and popular talent and formats.”

“We believe that by coming together with Scripps, we will create a stronger, more flexible and more dynamic media company with a global content engine that can be fully optimized and monetized across our combined networks, products and services in every country around the world,” he added.

Viacom, the owner of MTV, Comedy Central, and Nickelodeon, had pursued an acquisition of Scripps Networks Interactive, according to Fox Business.

Discovery said that the two cable networks will gain $350 million in cost savings and will provide more international opportunities for Scripps’ business.

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