Entertainment One Buys 70 Percent Stake in 'Lip Sync Battle U.K.' Producer Whizz Kid

Jessica Sample
Entertainment One CEO Darren Throop

The $9.7 million deal "gives us a strong footing in one of the most creative markets in the world," Britain, says CEO Darren Throop.

Entertainment One said Monday that it has acquired a 70 percent controlling stake in Whizz Kid Entertainment, the U.K. non-scripted TV production company behind such series as Lip Sync Battle U.K. and MTV's Ex on the Beach.

The company paid 6.9 million pounds ($9.7 million), including 5.0 million pounds ($7.1 million) in cash and the rest in stock. eOne can acquire the remaining 30 percent stake after a five-year period. 

The news came as TV industry representatives came together in Cannes for the annual international market MIPTV.

Whizz Kid was founded in 2006 by Malcolm Gerrie. He and Lisa Chapman will continue to lead Whizz Kid. eOne is currently adapting Ex on the Beach for MTV in the U.S.

For the year ended March 31, 2017, Whizz Kid reported revenue of 14.2 million pounds ($20.0 million) and profit before tax of 3.3 million pounds ($4.7 million).

"The addition of Whizz Kid to eOne's non-scripted television business gives us a strong footing in one of the most creative markets in the world," said eOne CEO Darren Throop. "I'm pleased to welcome Malcolm, Lisa and the Whizz Kid team to the group, and I'm excited about how this new relationship will deliver great new series on both sides of the Atlantic."