Current TV is considering putting itself up for sale, or entering into a partnership with another company, a spokesperson at the independent and politically progressive cable company told TPM Friday.
While nothing is formal yet, Laura Nelson, Current’s senior vice president for communications, said, “We’re exploring strategic options, including sale, also including partnerships or straight investment.”
The New York Post got the scoop late Thursday evening. Current’s CEO Joel Hyatt told the Post: “Current has been approached many times by media companies interested in acquiring our company. This year alone, we have had three inquiries. As a consequence, we thought it might be useful to engage expertise to help us evaluate our strategic options.”
Hyatt and former Vice President Al Gore founded Current in 2005. Current hired progressive heartthrob Keith Olbermann in February 2011 to launch the network’s primetime programming. Cenk Uygur and former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm later came onboard to round out the evening lineup.
Olbermann was noticeably absent during the network’s Iowa caucus coverage and a couple Republican primary debates in early 2012. Reports of clashes between Olbermann and his bosses swirled, and Current finally ousted its star host in March.
Current has continued to expand its programming lineup, but the network has not attracted Olbermann-level talent since. Former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer took over Olbermann’s 8 p.m. ET slot.
The Post reports that Current is in about 60 million homes, and ad revenue last year totaled an estimated $16.9 million.
David Taintor is TPM’s News Editor. He contributes to TPM’s Livewire coverage, among other areas. David is from Chanhassen, Minnesota, where, yes, it gets very cold. Reach him at taintor [at] talkingpointsmemo.com