Mark Levin’s CRTV and Glenn Beck’s The Blaze have merged to form a right-wing media and opinion giant that appears poised to compete directly with Fox News’ just-launched streaming service.
Financial terms of the merger were not disclosed.
The Blaze’s website, started by Beck in 2010, claims that the newly formed Blaze Media will reach more than 165 million people every month, making it the “largest independent, traditionally conservative multiplatform media company” in the U.S.
Levin, a popular radio host and the founder of LevinTV, which grew to become CRTV, will join the Blaze brand name, along with other hosts including Michelle Malkin, “Duck Dynasty” star Phil Robertson, former Fox co-host Eric Bolling and others.
The announcement comes less than a week after Fox launched its $5.99-a-month streaming opinion site, Fox Nation. That subscription service started with a slate of original content featuring some of the television network’s regular contributors and hosts. A monthly pass to the BlazeTV service costs $10, according to its website.
Gaston Mooney, who will be Blaze Media’s co-president, told CNN when asked about Fox Nation that “CRTV and TheBlaze were the two leaders in the [subscription video on demand] space and it’s flattering that more traditional, established networks are moving that direction as well. More content choices and voices for Americans is always a good thing.”
Beck hosted his own program on Fox that ended in 2011. While he was criticized by many in media and entertainment circles for his takes on President Barack Obama’s administration, Beck broke with many of his colleagues by criticizing then-candidate Donald Trump during the 2016 election. He also praised former first lady Michelle Obama after she denounced Trump’s past comments about women in a fiery speech.
Beck has tightened his company’s belt significantly in recent years, announcing layoffs of more than 20 percent in August 2017. Beck told The Hollywood Reporter in a report Sunday that The Blaze has been profitable for about 12 months, although The Daily Beast reported that the company experienced another round of layoffs in June.