Germany's ZDF Buys Stake in U.K. Producer of 'Black Ops,' 'Myth Hunters'

Courtesy of World Media Rights
'Black Ops'

ZDF Enterprises will make its first investment in a British firm to own 32.5 percent of World Media Rights.

ZDF Enterprises, the commercial arm and international distribution business of German public broadcaster ZDF, said Tuesday that it has agreed to acquire a 32.5 percent stake in U.K. production company World Media Rights.

Financial details about ZDF Enterprises' first investment in a British production firm weren't disclosed.

Founded in 2007, World Media Rights is led by CEO Alan Griffiths. It produces factual TV programming and drama reconstructions, for which it has developed a reputation, for the likes of Reelz, American Heroes Channel and Netflix. Its U.S. cable shows have included Myth Hunters (History), Black Ops (American Heroes Channel) and Air Crash Confidential (Discovery Channel).

"We have worked with a number of distribution businesses over the years and have found ZDF Enterprises an excellent partner who can best sell our shows internationally," said Griffiths. "This investment will help us further our ambitions by producing new types of shows in the factual entertainment space."

Alexander Coridass, president and CEO of ZDF Enterprises, said: "Alan is a brilliant and internationally renowned creator and producer. We have had distribution mandates of World Media Rights productions for many years and value their creative strength and economical power."

He added: "It was simply the next logical step in our partnership to become a shareholder. This closer relationship will enable us to jointly produce and market even more outstanding productions for the U.K., Germany and the entire world in the future."

ZDF Enterprises’ investment is subject to approval by Germany’s federal cartel office.

The investment coincides with a board restructure at World Media Rights, whereby David McNab, producer of such acclaimed TV documentaries as The Secret Life of the Cell, The Planets and In the Shadow of the Moon, joins the company as creative director alongside Griffiths. ZDF Enterprises’ vp corporate and portfolio strategy Tanja Meier-Sieden will also join the World Media Rights board.


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