Image: Reese Witherspoon. Source: GabboT, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Hello Sunshine, a media company founded by Academy Award-winning actress and entrepreneur Reese Witherspoon, is exploring a sale, according to The Wall Street Journal.
The privately-held company, which could be valued as much as $1 billion in a deal, has been weighing its options in recent months after receiving interest from companies including Apple Inc (Nasdaq: AAPL ), the newspaper reported, citing confidential sources.
Sources said the company was already working with investment bankers. Both Hello Sunshine and Apple declined to comment on the report.
Founded in 2016 as part of a joint venture with AT&T Inc (NYSE: ), the Los Angeles-based production company focuses on telling female-driven stories on film.
Its production slate includes HBO’s “Big Little Lies,” Apple TV+’s “The Morning Show,” Hulu’s “Little Fires Everywhere” and upcoming titles like Amazon's “Daisy Jones and the Six.”
Witherspoon’s popular book club, which spurred a book tour and app, also falls under the Hello Sunshine umbrella, as well as women-centric podcasts and videos that highlight female entrepreneurs.
Video source: YouTube, TIME
Hello Sunshine is owned by Witherspoon and her partners, venture capitalist Seth Rodsky and former Creative Artists Agency agent Jim Toth, Witherspoon’s husband.
Equity investors include AT&T’s Otter Media and Emerson Collective, a philanthropic organization launched by Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs.
Media assets, from smaller companies like Witherspoon’s to larger operations like Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, are being eyed increasingly by streaming companies looking to expand their libraries, Bloomberg News noted.
In May, Amazon said it reached a deal to buy MGM Holdings, the parent company of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, for $8.45 billion. The e-commerce giant said it hopes to leverage MGM’s storied filmmaking history and vast catalog of 4,000 movies and 17,000 television shows to help boost Amazon Studios.
The MGM acquisition followed AT&T’s announcement that its WarnerMedia unit would be spun off and combined with Discovery Inc, a move that will bring HBO, HGTV, Warner Bros, CNN and Food Network under one roof.
Source: Equities News