THE US media group Warner Bros Discovery has announced it will sell its stake in British news channel GB News.

After providing the majority of the initial £60 million funding for the channel in January 2021, Discovery was merged with the entertainment giant Warner Bros earlier this year.

The group announced that the decision to exit GB News was due to a rationalisation of its portfolio following the merger of the two companies.

A spokesperson for Warner Bros Discovery said: “Following the merger between Discovery and WarnerMedia earlier this year our portfolio now includes several wholly owned news brands including CNN Worldwide, TVN Group in Poland and Newshub in New Zealand.

“In light of this, and our continued evaluation of our global and local investment portfolio, we have exited our investment in GB News and are no longer shareholders.”

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Two of the channel’s co-founders – Andrew Cole and Mark Schneider – also announced their resignations and sold their stakes in the business.

However, Sir Paul Marshall and Dubai-based investment firm Legatum Ventures have forked over another £60m to the right-wing broadcaster as it continues to recruit commentators.

A Conservative Party donor Marshall previously invested £10m in GB News and temporarily replaced Andrew Neil as the chairman of the channel in the wake of Neil’s resignation in September last year.

It was recently confirmed that former Tory cabinet minister Michael Portillo will be joining the channel to present a new programme.

The associate editor of The Telegraph, Camilla Tominey, has also been recruited from LBC.

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Chief executive of GB News Angelos Frangopoulos – who previously ran Rupert Murdoch’s Sky News Australia for nearly two decades – said: “We’ve already employed more than 200 journalists and now we’ll invest more deeply in a number of areas, including a new digital product suite, our technology and studio, subtitles, additional distribution platforms, and exciting new talent.”

Although the channel initially struggled to find viewers it has since made in-roads in the prime time spot with presenters such as Nigel Farage.

It has also fought off competition with Rupert Murdoch’s TalkTV, which has a regular primetime audience share of less than 0.2%.