Former Veep Al Gore Eyes Vivendi Cable Buy

01 October 2003

Newsworld International, the Vivendi Universal-owned US cable group orphaned after its parent's other US media properties were merged with NBC [WAMN: 05-Sep-03], could be sold to a group of investors headed by former US vice president Al Gore.

Newsworld, a network available to some twenty million US homes, broadcasts news from around the globe. Gore and his media investors have been essaying the cable TV scene for several months allegedly seeking a vehicle to counter the outpourings of rightist media such as NewsCorp's Fox News Channel and radio ranter Rush Limbaugh.

The Gore group has also run the rule over TechTV, the cable business owed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. In addition it has met with Comcast Corporation and is said to seek a meeting with Time Warner. Neither company was willing to comment on Gore's interest.

Meantime, talks are in train with Newsworld although insiders say a done deal is as yet distant. According to media consultancy Kagan World Media, the [mainly digital] network is expected to have net revenues of only $19 million (€16.28m; £11.42m) this year and a negative cashflow of about $20 million.

Neither Gore, nor his partner in the venture Joel Hyatt, could be reached for comment.

Data sourced from: The Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff