In another shakeup in the small-screen landscape, NBCUniversal has bought out its partners in preschool cable network Sprout. The company says this move demonstrates its increased commitment to kids’ programming.
The Wall Street Journal reports that NBCUniversal raised its stake in Sprout to 100% from 47% after buying out the interests held by PBS and HIT Television Ventures. Terms of the transaction weren’t disclosed. Originally called PBS Kids Sprout, the channel was launched in 2005 as a joint venture between Comcast, PBS, Sesame Workshop and HIT Entertainment. Sesame Workshop divested its stake in 2012.
“We see enormous potential in Sprout, and we are committed to our investment in the kids and family arena,” said Bonnie Hammer, the chairman of NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment.
Sprout, which is distributed in 60 million homes, features programming ranging from reruns of Sesame Street, Thomas and Friends, Berenstain Bears and Sid the Science Guy to original shows such as Justin Time, The Chica Show and Sarah and Duck.