Will Discovery’s Big Purchase Affect Silver Spring Headquarters?

Will Discovery’s Big Purchase Affect Silver Spring Headquarters?

Media giant adding channels with Scripps acquisition

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Discovery Headquarters in Silver Spring

Joe Zimmermann

A Discovery Communications spokeswoman said Monday afternoon that there were no decisions on office locations since the company announced a $14.6 billion deal to acquire Scripps Networks Interactive, the owner of channels such as HGTV, Food Network and Travel Channel.

The spokeswoman, who asked not to be identified by name, said the deal itself is not expected to close until January.

“We’ve got several months until we even close the transaction before we even think about anything related to [office] locations,” the spokeswoman told Bethesda Beat.

Discovery employs about 1,300 people at its 10-story, 500,000-square-foot downtown Silver Spring headquarters. The company has been based there since 2003.

Scripps employs about 1,000 people at its Knoxville, Tennessee, headquarters, where the company moved in 2010, and another 2,500 people worldwide, according to the Knoxville News Sentinel.

The Discovery spokeswoman said the Silver Spring headquarters is the company’s largest office and is home to its operations, technology and corporate services employees. Channels such as the flagship Discovery Channel and TLC are based in Los Angeles and many company executives are in New York City, the spokeswoman said.

She noted that its London office expanded as the company’s European footprint has grown. In 2015, Discovery acquired and took full control of Eurosport, one of the leading European and Asian sports channels. The company has other offices in Singapore, Milan and Warsaw.

Discovery’s Monday announcement of the Scripps deal noted the two companies believe they can save $350 million through “cost synergies” such as by streamlining or eliminating redundant processes.

David Zaslav, Discovery’s president and CEO, did not mention any real estate decisions or employee changes in a call with investors shortly after the deal was announced Monday morning.

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