Prod'n troika taking Shine to next level


LONDON -- Shine Prods., Elisabeth Murdoch's U.K. production company, is poised to almost quadruple in size through the acquisition of three U.K. production companies for £65 million ($127.5 million), it was announced Thursday.

Shine is finalizing the terms of an expansion that will see it acquire "Spooks" and "Life on Mars" creator Kudos Film and TV for £35 million ($68.7 million), "Model Behavior" producer Princess Prods. for £25 million ($40 million) and factual specialist Firefly Prods. for £10 million ($19.6 million).

The acquisitions will be financed by Shine's existing shareholders.

Chief executive Murdoch owns 60% of the company, Sony Pictures Television International has 14%, venture capital group 3i has 10%, and BSkyB holds 3%.

All three deals lock in executive talent from the companies concerned: Kudos joint managing directors Stephen Garrett and Jane Featherstone, Princess co-founders Sebastian Scott and Henrietta Conrad and Firefly managing directors Nick Curwin and Magnus Temple will join the Shine board.

The deals will grow Shine's annual revenue from £25 million ($40 million) a year to about £95 million ($186.6 million) a year on a pro forma basis.

Murdoch said the deal had "significant potential" both in the U.K. and internationally.

"We are extremely excited about this development of the Shine business," she said. "Kudos, Princess and Firefly all stand for excellence within their respective fields. We share a creative culture, a passion for making great television and I believe there is significant potential for these combined businesses both domestically and internationally."