By Stephanie Holland
After a star-studded bidding process led to the most interest BET has seen in years, Paramount Global abruptly pulled the plug on the sale of its majority stake in the BET Media Group. Notable names interested in acquiring BET, its streaming service BET+, BET Studios and VH1 included Tyler Perry, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Byron Allen, and a group comprised of 50 Cent, Shaquille O’Neal and Kenya Barris. Filmmaker Perry already owns a minority stake in BET, so he was widely assumed to be the leading contender.
As previously reported by The Root, Paramount Global ended the bidding process when Perry refused to move his offer from $2 billion to the corporation’s $3 billion asking price. “We made this decision because the benefits of maintaining a majority stake in BET Media Group creates more value for Paramount than any of the proposals we received,” a source close to Paramount told The New York Post.
The Post went on to report that questions arose about the true value of the BET Media Group after “Paramount’s sell-side bank JPMorgan,” which was originally supposed “to offer financing to suitors” didn’t. The media giant also “missed its forecast for BET’s earnings during the auction process,” which led to even more questions.
At least one bidder definitely wasn’t feeling Paramount’s valuation, as 50 Cent reacted to the failed bidding process on Instagram, writing, “We will get them next time, Shaq. That shit wasn’t worth $3,000,000,000.”