Simon Cowell is set to partner with U.K. retail magnate Sir Philip Green on a global entertainment company that will produce and own TV content in the U.S. and Britain.

The venture, which does not yet have a name, will have Green's backing as a holding company for Cowell's entertainment interests, as well as a launch pad for new programming, according to the Financial Times. It would also provide Green with merchandising opportunities.

The FT reports that a new Cowell contract for Fox's "American Idol" - the current contract expires in May - will likely be struck through the new company. The rights to the show are owned by 19 Entertainment.

It also states that Cowell's long-term deal with Sony Music comes to an end next year, adding that a source says he is keen to agree new deals with all of his broadcasting and music partners.

It is not yet clear how the new venture would work alongside Cowell's existing interests, such as Syco Music and Syco TV, on which he partners with Sony Music Entertainment. The major declined to comment on the date when the deal is up for renewal.

Simon Cowell's spokesman Max Clifford tells Billboard.biz that any talk of a deal is "premature" but adds that an announcement could be "a few weeks away." He acknowledged that the pair, who are good friends, have been in discussions on a global entertainment proposal and that there are a "lot of areas that are mutually beneficial."

TV production, talent management and merchandising will be the business areas of the new joint venture, according to reports.

While Cowell has existing partnerships with Fox and Sony Music Entertainment, there are areas that he and Green "want to explore and develop and build," says Clifford.

Green owns U.K. retail chain BHS and the Arcadia Group, whose clothing chains include Topshop.