ABC News Staffers ‘Freaking’ out over Reports Disney in Talks to Sell Outlet to Mogul Byron Allen, Nexstar

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 12: Bob Iger, chairman and CEO of The Walt Disney Company attends the dedication ceremony as ABC News headquarters in New York is proclaimed 'The Barbara Walters Building' ABC News Headquarters Dedication Ceremony on May 12, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Slaven Vlasic/Getty …
Slaven Vlasic/Getty

Allen Media Group owner Byron Allen has made a $10 billion offer to Walt Disney to buy the ABC TV network, local stations, as well as the ancillary FX and National Geographic cable channels, a host of reports detailed Friday.

The bid, confirmed by Allen’s representative to CBS MoneyWatch, would include the entertainment giant’s ABC’s national TV network as well as several regional stations.

The offer is “preliminary” and “could change” at any time, a source with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg.

CNN reports a half-dozen people inside and around ABC News contacted by the outlet on Thursday evening made clear a feeling of dread and trepidation is engulfing staffers as they face the prospect of being sold.

“Everyone is freaking the f**k out,” one ABC News staffer bluntly told CNN about the state of affairs inside the network.

“It’s all anyone at work is talking about,” added another.

The $10 billion figure is based on an estimation that the networks accrued $1.25 billion in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization within the past year, the publication reported.

Byron Allen attends game three of the Western Conference Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Denver Nuggets at Arena on May 20, 2023 in Los Angeles, California. (Kevork Djansezian/Getty)

Disney has also held exploratory discussions about selling ABC to regional TV station operator Nexstar Media, two people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

Disney CEO Bob Iger signaled in July that Disney was open to selling some of its television assets as consumers continue to flock to streaming networks, dropping traditional television and cable as they go.

The company has been in talks with potential buyers including local broadcaster Nexstar, Bloomberg reported.

Disney is facing financial pressures as its fledgling streaming business continues to lose money.

The company’s streaming unit has lost more than $11 billion since it debuted Disney+ in 2019, and during the most recent quarter alone it reported $512 million in losses, according to an August earnings report.

Disney said in a statement to Bloomberg earlier that while it’s considering strategic options for its traditional TV networks, no decisions on a sale have been made.

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