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Core Media Group, the 13-year-old company that famously acquired Simon Fuller’s 19 Entertainment (and with it a piece of American Idol) for $200 million back in 2015, is changing its name to “Industrial Media.” The move coincides with Core’s acquisition of Eli Holzman’s The Intellectual Property Corp. (IPC), with Holzman taking the CEO position at Industrial.
Dubbing itself a “super indie production group,” the new entity is emblematic of an unscripted landscape in a state of flux, with acquisitions and executive moves constantly changing the chess board. Industrial launches as a substantial operation, with 19 (So You Think You Can Dance), Sharp Entertainment (90 Day Fiance), B-17 Entertainment (Fluffy’s Food Adventures) and IPC (Leah Remini’s Scientology and the Aftermath) all under one roof.
In addition to Holzman, IPC’s president and co-founder, Aaron Saidman joins Industrial as president — while remaining president of IPC.
“Our partners at Crestview, Tennenbaum and UTA, and the Core management team, especially Dennis Miller and CFO Scott Frosch, and UTA CEO Jeremy Zimmer, have done a brilliant job refashioning their assets into a creative, nimble, powerfully resourced studio of the future,” said Holzman. “Adding IPC to this group and taking advantage of their extraordinary access to talent and capital is a marvelous opportunity for Aaron and me. Continuing to lead IPC now alongside the brilliant producers at the group companies will be a privilege. In this booming content marketplace, there has never been a greater need for a supplier like Industrial Media that can support exceptional filmmakers while delivering consistently and at the highest-quality level for our buyers.”
Industrial boasts more than 40 shows on over 20 networks, but Holzman plans to grow aggressively both organically and through strategic acquisitions and investments. His arrival in the top post comes two years after Core was restructured by majority shareholder Crestview Partners, Tennenbaum Capital Partners and United Talent Agency. Miller, Core’s executive chairman, will stay on as chairman of Industrial and work alongside Holzman in evaluating other merger and acquisition opportunities for the company.
There are certainly no shortage of possibilities in that arena. While the buying spree of independent unscripted producers from earlier in this decade took a lot of the bigger small fish out of the pond, the volume of indies still functioning without a parent company is as immense as the genre.
“We have reorganized the company, re-invigorated franchises, and set the stage for a new chapter of growth for our assets and investments,” noted Miller. “Eli and his team are incredibly forward-thinking and possess all of the skills and vision needed to not only compete but thrive as they lead our business today and in the future marketplace.”
Holzman, who started out in features at Miramax Films, went on to co-found the company’s TV division — where he created, among other things, Project Runway. He went on to found the U.S. arm of British production company Studio Lambert (Undercover Boss) and run All3Media America before leaving to found IPC. He is a founding member of New York’s successful Meatball Shop restaurant group.
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