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NATPE Miami 2019 - Tyler Perry Keynote "Living the Dream: A Career in Content"

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In a watershed moment, it appears that both Tyler Perry and Byron Allen are competing to acquire the majority of BET Media Group. 

According to reports, Perry has been involved in conversations with executives at Paramount Global with the aim of acquiring a majority stake in the BET Media Group. The operation includes BET and VH1 as well as streaming network BET + and the BET Studios production company. Allen, who is the founder and head of the Allen Media Group, has publicly acknowledged through a spokesperson that he was “interested in buying BET, and he will be pursuing the acquisition of the network.” Representatives for Perry and Paramount Global didn’t respond to press inquiries about the situation. 

The 53-year-old Perry enjoys a good relationship with Paramount and BET dating back to 2005 when the latter network funded his first motion picture, Diary of a Mad Black Woman. Since then, he has been in partnership with Paramount on a long-term film deal that began in 2017. The two entities entered into a television partnership deal in May 2020. Both have been lucrative ventures, with Perry releasing several series to popular acclaim including “House of Payne,” “Sisters,” “Ruthless”, and “The Oval”

on BET and BET+.

The 61-year-old Allen and his company have been on a monumental path within the last couple of years, recently acquiring the Black News Channel for $11 million last year and lifting it out of bankruptcy. Allen’s company has also acquired The Weather Channel along with 27 ABC, NBC, CBS, and Fox affiliate stations within the past three years with an investment price of $1 billion. Digital outlets TheGrio and HBCU Go are also under the Allen Media Company umbrella.

News of Paramount Global’s potential sale of the BET Media Group was announced this past Monday in an article from the Wall Street Journal. Reports are that the group is looking to make the move to shore up a planned initiative to rebrand the Showtime linear and streaming networks into its own Paramount + network, which was announced earlier this year.