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Entertainment One, headquartered in Canada, has agreed to acquire a 70 percent stake in the U.K. producer of kids TV show Peppa Pig, with which it co-owns the animated hit franchise.
“eOne has entered into an agreement with Peppa Pig co-owners Astley Baker Davies to purchase a controlling stake in the global brand,” it said on Wednesday. “As part of the deal, creators, directors and producers Mark Baker, Neville Astley and Phil Davies are producing an additional 52 magical episodes of Peppa Pig.”
The price tag for the deal is $212 million (£140 million). Che company said it will use a rights issue to raise $293.3 million (£193.6 million) to fund the deal and related expenses.
The partners are currently equally sharing the earnings from Peppa Pig. The planned acquisition will increase its “interest in the related share of earnings from the exploitation of Peppa Pig from 50 percent to 85 percent,” and Astley Baker Davies will become a subsidiary of the company, meaning its financials will be fully consolidated, Entertainment one said.
Since 2007, the companies have co-owned the franchise, distributed globally by eOne. “Peppa Pig has emerged as a worldwide phenomenon and reflects the success of our 10-year partnership working with the creative genius of Mark, Nev and Phil,” said Entertainment One president and CEO Darren Throop. “Now the number one pre-school property in the U.K., Australia, Spain, Italy, Mexico and Brazil, and a leader in major territories around the world, the growth opportunities for Peppa are significant.”
He added: “As we continue to expand in the U.S., Asia and throughout our existing markets, we are excited to enter into new markets and take Peppa to new heights.”
ABD has produced more than 200 episodes over six seasons. The show has aired in over 180 territories, including on NickJr. in the U.S.
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