Sky Takes Majority Stake in U.K. Production Firm Avanti Media

Courtesy of Sky

The company produces BBC religious hymns show 'Songs of Praise' and has had a working relationship with the pay TV giant for a while.

U.K. pay TV giant Sky, in which 21st Century Fox owns a 39 percent stake, has acquired a 51 percent stake in production firm Avanti Media, which is based in Wales and produces BBC religious hymns show Songs of Praise, via its Sky Vision unit.

Financial terms weren't disclosed.

It is the company's latest investment in an independent production company, joining the likes of Love Productions, Blast Films, True North and Sugar Films in Britain, as well as Jupiter Entertainment, Znak & Co. and Talos Films in the U.S.

Avanti, with which Sky has had a first-look deal and in which Sky last year quietly bought a minority stake, was founded by Emyr Afan and Mair Davies. 

Said Sky Vision managing director Jane Millichip: "We have been working with Avanti for two years now, so the acquisition of a majority stake is a natural extension of our joint growth strategy. Emyr Afan and Mair Davies have built an exciting production business with a strong mix of event-based entertainment through to current affairs and documentary, testified by recent commissions; the Mobo Awards on Channel 5; the BBC’s Songs of Praise; and BBC Wales’ current affairs series The Hour." 

She added: "We believe Sky Vision will provide strong commercial partnership, and Avanti is a complementary fit in our growing production portfolio."