Starz Inc.
  • Encore Movie Group (1991–1994)
  • Encore Media Corporation (1994–1998)
  • Encore Media Group (1998–1999)
  • Starz Encore Media Group (1999–2001)
  • Starz Encore Group (2001–2005)
  • Starz Entertainment Group (2005–2009)
  • Liberty Starz (2009–2013)
Company typeSubsidiary
IndustryPay television
Founded1991; 33 years ago (1991) (as Encore Movie Group)
United States
Key people
Revenue$1.631 billion[1]
$445 million[2]
ParentLionsgate (2016–present)
WebsiteOfficial website

Starz Inc. is an American entertainment company that owns and operates pay television channels, including the namesake Starz network, Starz Encore and MoviePlex, as well as a media distribution company.[3] The company is headquartered at Meridian, Colorado,[4] and uses nearby Englewood as its location in corporate filings and press releases. On December 8, 2016, the company became a subsidiary of Lionsgate.[5]


Early history

Encore Movie Group was founded in 1991 as a wholly owned television programming subsidiary and a joint venture of Liberty Media and Tele-Communications Inc., two companies that were controlled by John C. Malone. The premium channel Encore was launched in 1991 on cable systems operated by Tele-Communications Inc., followed by the launch of Starz in 1994, and Encore Plex (now MoviePlex) in 1997. In 1994, Encore Movie Group was renamed Encore Media Corporation.

On June 2, 1997, TCI announced it would transfer part of its ownership stake in Encore Media Corporation to sister company Liberty Media, due in part to substantial losses incurred by the Starz network. TCI retained a minority 20% ownership interest in Encore Media Corporation, renamed Encore Media Group in 1998, until Liberty Media acquired TCI's stake following its 1999 merger with AT&T Corporation and assumed full ownership of the Encore Media Group.

In 1999, Encore Media Group was renamed the Starz Encore Media Group; "Media" was dropped off in 2001, becoming Starz Encore Group. The company also launched a film and documentary production division, Starz Encore Entertainment.

As part of a corporate restructuring in 2003, Starz Encore Group eliminated 100 jobs in its nine regional offices, four of which have been closed.[6] On March 25, 2005, Starz Encore Group was renamed Starz Entertainment Group (also known as Starz Entertainment, LLC), and on March 28, the Starz! network was renamed Starz (dropping the exclamation point) and adopted a new logo featuring a hand-drawn star and a wordmark set in Helvetica Neue Black.

Starz Media

On August 31, 2006, Liberty Media acquired the US division of IDT Entertainment for $186 million,[7] followed by the Canadian and Australian divisions on September 29, 2006.[8] IDT Entertainment was then merged under Starz Entertainment Group and renamed Starz Media.

On November 19, 2009, Liberty Media spun off Starz Entertainment Group into a separate tracking stock, known as Liberty Starz.[9] On January 1, 2010, Chris Albrecht became the president and CEO of Liberty Starz, overseeing the company's entities including Starz Entertainment, Overture Films, Anchor Bay Entertainment and Film Roman.[10]

On January 4, 2011, The Weinstein Company (TWC) acquired 25% of Starz Media, one of the operating units of Liberty Starz.[11] The arrangement included a five-year distribution deal under which starting in April 2011, Liberty Starz's Anchor Bay Entertainment would release new TWC films on DVD and Starz Digital Media would handle online downloads and streaming.[12]

On August 8, 2012, Liberty Media announced that it would spin-off Liberty Starz into a separate public company; the transaction includes about $1.5 billion of debt. The spin-off of the subsidiary was expected to be completed by the end of 2012,[13] but was actually completed on January 11, 2013. As a result of the spin-off, Liberty Starz changed its name to "Starz Inc."[14] Starz Inc.'s businesses and assets at the time consisted of Starz Networks, Starz Distribution, and its minority stake in Arc Productions.

Acquisition by Lionsgate

On February 11, 2015, John C. Malone, the majority shareholder in both Starz and its former parent company Liberty Media, swapped a 4.5% stake with 14.5% of the voting power in Starz Inc. for 3.4% of shares in film and television entertainment company Lionsgate while joining the company's board of directors.[15][16] Fourteen days later, Starz CEO Chris Albrecht hinted a possible merger with Lionsgate.[17]

On November 10, 2015, Malone's two other companies, Liberty Global and Discovery Communications, made a joint investment of $195–400 million in Lionsgate and acquired a 3.4% stake in the company.[18][19][20][21][22]

On June 30, 2016, Lionsgate agreed to acquire Starz Inc. for $4.4 billion in cash and stock.[23][24] As part of the acquisition by Lionsgate, Starz Inc.'s home entertainment business have been subsumed into Lionsgate's Worldwide Home Entertainment division, as well as Starz Inc.'s Worldwide TV distribution group being similarly combined.[25] On December 8, 2016, the deal was finalized thus making Starz a subsidiary of Lionsgate.[5]

In August 2023, Lionsgate announced it would be exiting Latin America before spinning off Starz into its own company. [26]

In November 2023, Lionsgate announced the spinoff Starz into its own separate public traded company is expected to in early-April 2024. As a result, Lionsgate announced that Starz would be laying off 10% of its work force and exiting the television markets in both the UK and Australia by the end of 2023. [27]

Starz Networks

The Starz Networks division currently consists of 17 cable TV channels. As of December 31, 2012, Starz and Starz Encore serve a combined 56 million subscribers, including 21 million of Starz, and 35 million of Starz Encore. Starz, Starz Encore, and MoviePlex air over 1,000 movies monthly across 17 linear networks, On Demand, and online offerings through Starz Encore Play and MoviePlex Play.[28]

List of Starz-owned channels


  1. ^ "Starz Reports Fourth Quarter And Year End 2012 Financial Results" (Press release). PR Newswire. February 27, 2013. Retrieved March 28, 2016.
  2. ^ "Starz Reports Fourth Quarter And Year End 2012 Financial Results" (Press release). PR Newswire. February 27, 2013. Retrieved March 28, 2016.
  3. ^ STARZ to Ring The NASDAQ Stock Market Opening Bell "" January 24, 2013
  4. ^ Weiker, Jim (April 22, 2000). "Starz Encore unit to build new home in Meridian park". DenverPost. Retrieved December 8, 2021.
  5. ^ a b Vlessing, Etan (December 8, 2016). "Lionsgate Completes $4.4B Acquisition of Starz". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 9, 2016.
  6. ^ Steve Donohue (November 17, 2003). "Starz cuts staff, regional hubs; Starz Encore Group eliminates 100 jobs and closes four regional offices". Multichannel News. Archived from the original on November 5, 2012. Retrieved February 25, 2011.
  7. ^ IDT Corporation – Press Releases
  8. ^ UK Film and Television News – Liberty Completes First Stage of IDT Acquisition
  9. ^ "Liberty Media Completes Split-Off and Merger with The DIRECTV Group, Inc". Liberty Media. PR Newswire. November 19, 2009. Archived from the original on November 19, 2015. Retrieved February 23, 2011.
  10. ^ "Liberty Media Names Chris Albrecht as New President and CEO of Starz, LLC" (Press release). PR Newswire. December 22, 2009. Archived from the original on December 25, 2009. Retrieved January 21, 2010.
  11. ^ "Starz Rises During NASDAQ Debut". MultiChannel News. November 20, 2009. Retrieved March 28, 2016.
  12. ^ "Weinstein Co. buys 25% of Starz Media". Los Angeles Times. January 5, 2011. Retrieved March 28, 2016.
  13. ^ "Liberty Media to spin off Starz Network". Chicago Tribune. August 8, 2012. Retrieved March 28, 2016.
  14. ^ "Liberty Media Corporation and Starz Announce Completion of Spin-Off". Reuters. January 11, 2013. Archived from the original on February 3, 2014. Retrieved March 28, 2016.
  15. ^ Farrell, Maureen (February 11, 2015). "Malone, Starz, and Lions Gate Join Forces". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved February 12, 2015.
  16. ^ Lionsgate, Starz Swap Stock as John Malone Joins Board Brent Lang February 11, 2015. Retrieved February 26, 2015
  17. ^ Starz CEO Albrecht Hints at Possible Merger With Lions Gate Jeff Berman February 25, 2015. Retrieved February 26, 2015
  18. ^ "What's Next for Lionsgate and Liberty Global?". Variety. November 10, 2015. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  19. ^ "Lionsgate Strengthens Ties To John Malone: Liberty Global and Discovery Buy Stakes". Deadline Hollywood. November 10, 2015. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  20. ^ "Lionsgate sells 6.8% stake to John Malone's Liberty Global and Discovery". Los Angeles Times. November 10, 2015. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  21. ^ Merced, Michael J. (November 10, 2015). "Liberty Global and Discovery Take Stakes in Lions Gate". The New York Times. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  22. ^ Vlessing, Etan (November 10, 2015). "Liberty Global and Discovery To Take Stakes in Lionsgate". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 16, 2016.
  23. ^ Lieberman, David (June 30, 2016). "Lionsgate Agrees To Buy Starz For $4.4 Billion in Cash And Stock". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved June 30, 2016.
  24. ^ Schwindt, Oriana (December 8, 2016). "Lionsgate, Starz Close $4.4 Billion Acquisition". Variety. Retrieved December 8, 2016.
  25. ^ Aycock, Jason (October 28, 2016). "Filing: Starz CFO to leave as Lions Gate merger wraps". Seeking Alpha. Retrieved October 30, 2016.
  26. ^ Middleton, Richard (August 11, 2023). "Lionsgate delays Starz split, plans exit from Latin America". Digital TV Europe. Retrieved March 6, 2024.
  27. ^ Sherman, Alex (November 3, 2023). "Starz to lay off more than 10% of employees ahead of Lionsgate spinoff". CNBC. Retrieved March 6, 2024.
  28. ^ "Liberty Media Corp (LMCA.O)". Reuters. Archived from the original on March 19, 2013. Retrieved March 28, 2016.