A new network founded by former Hallmark CEO Bill Abbott is merging with Sony’s faith-based streaming service Pure Flix. Great American Family announced that the two will join forces to create Great American Adventures, a streaming service featuring family- and faith-based entertainment.
“In a media environment where programming and distribution business models are in a constant state of flux, this agreement provides a rare opportunity to maximize our potential with the expertise, market knowledge and content creation capabilities of a world-class partner like Sony Pictures,” Abbott said in a statement. “This merger will allow us to further our commitment to original, quality content and makes Great American Media and Pure Flix leaders in a large and under-served market.”
Leaders at both Great American Family and Pure Flix spoke to the importance of promoting family-friendly entertainment in the current market.
“Family-friendly entertainment remains an important segment of the industry, and merging these two entities will create the greatest opportunity to achieve more scale for Pure Flix as it continues to build its subscriber base,” said Ravi Ahuja, chairman of global television studios and corporate development for Sony Pictures. “Bill and the Great American Media team have been successfully leading the Great American Family and Great American Living brands, and we believe they have a winning plan to take Pure Flix to even greater heights.”
The Pure Flix streaming service emerged from a production company founded in 2005 by David A. R. White, Michael Scott, Russell Wolfe, Randy Travis, and Elizabeth Travis.
The company has produced such titles as The Wager, Home Beyond the Sun, In the Blink of an Eye, Sarah’s Choice, A Greater Yes: The Story of Amy Newhouse, The Book of Ruth: Journey of Faith, Holyman Undercover, and Samson.
In 2020, Sony Pictures Entertainment acquired the streaming service portion of the business and continued the company’s mission of promoting family-friendly and faith-based movies and TV shows.
Great American Family
In June 2021, former Crown Media CEO Bill Abbott announced he had partnered with Dallas-based Hicks Equity Partnership to purchase two cable networks in a deal Bloomberg estimated at $90 million. Great American Media began broadcasting in September 2021 on two channels, which were originally branded GAC Family and GAC Living.
The networks were eventually rebranded as Great American Family and Great American Living. They began producing original content both for television and for an app called Great American Community.
What does this mean?
The deal still needs regulatory approval. If it goes through, Great American Media will retain a controlling stake in the merged company, with Abbott as CEO, and oversee the day-to-day management of all multi-channel family and faith media brands.
We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.