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Boardwalk Pictures, the docuseries label behind Chef’s Table on Netflix and Welcome to Wrexham on FX/Hulu, has sold a minority stake to private equity firm Shamrock Capital, the producer said Feb. 15. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed.
The Santa Monica-based unscripted producer, led by CEO-founder Andrew Fried, said it secured a growth investment from Shamrock with an eye toward broadening its output as a seller of content to networks and streaming platforms as well as build out its staff working on projects.
Boardwalk, founded in 2010, has a suite of shows at Netflix, including Chef’s Table: Pizza, Street Food: USA, Last Chance U: Basketball, The Goop Lab and Cheer, sold docuseries Chasing Waves to Disney+, brought Dan Levy’s The Big Brunch to HBO Max and worked on W. Kamau Bell’s We Need to Talk About Cosby for Showtime. (The burgeoning portfolio of glossy projects landed Fried on The Hollywood Reporter‘s top unscripted TV producers list in 2022.)
“We’re so proud of the work we have put out into the world over the last decade,” Fried stated. “As our style of storytelling becomes increasingly more mainstream, we’re eager to continue to push the way that non-fiction entertainment reaches audiences around the globe.”
The deal marks the latest infusion of private equity cash into Hollywood production companies. This latest spending spree — from Apollo’s $760 million bet on Dune producer Legendary to Blackstone’s media roll up of Spanish-language studio Exile Content, Fauda producer Faraway Road and Cocomelon owner Moonbug to Stripes’ $225 million investment in Moonlight producer A24, and Abry Partners’ $100 million bet on Kevin Hart’s Hartbeat banner — has seen multiple other shingles trot out “for sale” or “stake for sale” signs.
Shamrock Capital, based in Los Angeles and led by president Steven Royer, has been ramping up its content investment bets. On Feb. 1, the firm said it secured $600 million in capital to target investments in film, TV, music, games, sports rights and other media and entertainment opportunities. The private equity company, founded as Roy E. Disney’s family investment firm, has current investments in podcast ad agency Ad Results Media, recruitment agency Bayard Advertising as well as trade publication Adweek.
“We believe that authentic storytelling will always have an engaged audience,” stated Shamrock partner Mike LaSalle on the Boardwalk investment, adding: “We are excited to partner with this talented team as they continue to bring their skills and sensibilities to new genres, formats, and mediums.”
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