By: Tim Langer, Time staff writer Christian media conglomerate Discovery Communications announced Tuesday it is forming a new digital media company called Discovery Media, based in Nashville, Tennessee.
The company will be called Discovery.
The new company will operate under the Discovery brand, and it will operate from the same Nashville, Tenn., headquarters as Discovery Communications.
The move comes amid a broader reorganization of the company and is the result of a merger between Discovery Communications and Discovery Communications’ parent company, Charter Communications, according to a company release.
The merger will provide Discovery with a stronger portfolio of assets, including content and entertainment brands.
The announcement was made by Discovery Communications chairman and CEO Jeff Zucker, who said the new company would “shape and develop the future of Christian media, from its core to the digital age.”
Zucker said the company will focus on creating and delivering compelling content that resonates with a broad audience of Christians and will help to strengthen the Christian community and its relationship with government and society.
He said Discovery Media will be focused on helping Christians engage with the world.
Discovery Media’s first product will be a video service that will be available on all of Discovery’s television and radio networks.
Discovery will also launch a new service called Christian Broadcasting Network, according the release.
Discovery also will be launching a digital digital video platform for the first time, according this release.
In addition, Discovery will continue to produce its popular network of documentaries, including “The Gospel” and “The Uninvited,” according the company.
“This is an exciting time for Discovery and for Christian families,” Zucker said in a statement.
“It is an opportunity to make sure we stay at the forefront of the new media and digital space, and to build on the foundation of our strong Christian heritage.”
Discovery will be owned by a group of Christian investors including billionaire David Geffen, former President George H.W. Bush and Hollywood producer John Landis.
Discovery is a media company that focuses on Christian-themed programming.
In 2015, Discovery launched a television network called Christian Living.
That same year, Discovery purchased the cable channel Christian Broadcasting for $600 million.
The combined company owns more than 70 channels in 50 countries.
The parent company of Discovery Communications is Charter Communications.
Charter’s stock price rose nearly 2% Tuesday, but it was down nearly 9% at $62.84 in early afternoon trading.
The stock closed Tuesday trading at $64.65.
Discovery’s new media company will take its name from the biblical phrase “discerning of the face of the beast.”
“The discovery of Christ in the New Testament and in the Bible itself has made us the first to notice the deep-rooted presence of a beast lurking in our midst, lurking in the darkness, and we were first to recognize it,” Zucker told a news conference.
“We are excited to see the company’s first foray into digital media, as we will provide a unique and exciting platform to help us continue to be the most visible voice of God’s Word in our lives and for the broader Christian community.”
The new Discovery Media also will serve as a partner for the Discovery Channel, which will be based in New York City.
“The Discovery Channel is a leader in bringing the Bible to people of all ages, backgrounds, beliefs and cultures, as well as in expanding the reach of the Bible for everyone in the 21st century,” said a Discovery News release.
“With Discovery Media we are working with some of the world’s most renowned, award-winning filmmakers, writers, producers and executives to deliver a variety of content for viewers across all platforms.”
Discovery Media is expected to begin rolling out the new Discovery digital channel and digital network later this year, according a release.
It will be announced in the coming months.
“Christians are now the largest demographic in the United States,” Zucker added.
“That means the Bible is now the most important source of Christian news in our day.
We know we can’t rely on the news of the day, but we can rely on God.”
A company spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Discovery, which is headquartered in Nashville and is owned by billionaire David Gelb, owns the Christian Broadcasting Networks and other Christian-focused media companies, according its website.
The Discovery brand was founded in the 1980s by Geffen and is one of the biggest brands in the Christian music business.