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Report: AMC Networks exploring possible sale or merger

The logo of AMC Networks. (Image: AMC Networks, Graphic: The Desk)

AMC Networks has hired investment firm Morgan Stanley to explore a possible sale or merger with a competitor, according to a report.

The news was first reported Thursday afternoon by CTFN, a financial wire that tracks mergers and acquisitions across various industries.

CTFN said an unnamed source confirmed Morgan Stanely had been retained by the cable TV programmer, though it wasn’t clear if AMC had started the formal process of a sale or was just surveying various economic factors leading to a possible sale.

Shares of AMC Networks jumped 7 percent before the market closed on Thursday.

AMC programs a handful of pay TV channels, including AMC, IFC, We TV and Sundance. It is also licensed to distribute two BBC channels — BBC World News and BBC America — to cable, satellite and streaming TV operators in the United States.