Metrodome acquires Target Entertainment

U.K. film distributor buys television rights company

LONDON -- U.K. film distribution and finance banner Metrodome, listed here on the AIM stock exchange, has completed an £800,000 ($1.3 million) deal to buy television rights company Target Entertainment Monday.

Metrodome hit the bullseye after snapping up Target's distribution and consumer products interests, and its film and entertainment production labels, Pink Sands and Target U.S.

But the distributor said Target's drama production arm Greenlit, which counts "Foyle's War" and "Vexed" among its credits, is not part of the deal.

Target Entertainment founder Alison Rayson will remain as chief executive of Target as well as taking up a seat on Metrodome's Board, the parties said.

Rayson said the deal marks the end of a long and arduous road to find fresh investors in her company, which was co-owned by private equity house Acuity Capital and entrepreneur Richard Thompson

"Target's refinancing process has been a tough and lengthy one, however the superb outcome of achieving such strong financial backers for the business in Mark Webster and Metrodome makes it more than worthwhile for the company's client base and staff," Rayson said. "Target's consolidation into the Metrodome group will provide the company with more firepower for rights acquisitions and with an enhanced back office service."

For Metrodome, it marks a significant push into television rights sales after a management revamp following the departure in April this year of Metrodome CEO Peter Urie who exited to pursue personal producer ambitions and the departure of theatrical distribution general manager Sara Frain.

Then the company said it would be significantly reducing its theatrical movie distribution endeavors while at the same time re-iterating a desire to keep its toe in the market.

Through the deal Metrodome will buy the shares of both Target's rights' businesses and has "committed to significantly invest in the company which will see a total spend of £3 million ($4.7 million)," Metrodome said.

Metrodome chairman and CEO Mark Webster said: "Target Entertainment is a perfect fit, which we predict will double our revenue and the size of the business within a short space of time."