Report: Travel Channel May Get PE Bid

(Reuters) – Private equity firms Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co, Thomas H. Lee Partners, and Providence Equity Partners Inc may bid for Cox Enterprises’ Travel Channel, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the situation.

The parties are in discussions with Discovery Communications Inc to run the channel should they win the auction, one of the people told the news agency.

Cox acquired Travel Channel in 2007, receiving $1.275 billion in cash along with the channel in exchange for its 25 percent stake in Discovery Communications Inc (DISCA.O).

Teaming up with private equity firms would allow Discovery to retain advertising contracts it kept when the network was sold to Cox, one of the people told the news agency.

Cox Communications and representatives for THL, KKR, and Providence Equity could not be reached for comment.

Scripps Networks Interactive (SNI.N) and General Electric Co’s (GE.N) NBC Universal are among media companies that have bid for Cox Enterprises’ Travel Channel, in an auction expected to fetch $600-$700 million, two sources familiar with the matter had told Reuters in August.

(Reporting by Chakradhar Adusumilli in Bangalore; Editing by Dan Lalor)