Cable TV rivals QVC and the Home Shopping Network announced they plan to merge through an all-stock transaction valued around $2.1 billion. QVC chief exec Mike George will run the combined company and 17 cable channels. As impulse buying and video watching increasingly go mobile, the TV-based retailers have been facing increased competition from Amazon. “QVC’s sales in the U.S. have declined in each of the last three quarters,” reports The Wall Street Journal. “Revenue at HSN has declined for six straight quarters, and the company has been searching for a new CEO.”
QVC parent Liberty Interactive, run by John Malone, already has a 38 percent stake in HSN.
“Following the merger, Liberty plans to spin off its cable operations into an independent company and rename itself QVC Group,” notes WSJ. “The business will include the flash-sale website Zulily, which QVC bought for $2.4 billion in 2015, and HSN’s Cornerstone division, which includes home retailer Ballard Designs among other brands.”