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BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of the U.K. public broadcaster, has increased its stake in drama production firm Lookout Point from 35 percent to 49 percent, the companies said Thursday.
Financial details weren’t disclosed. As part of the deal, the two companies agreed on an option for BBC Worldwide to acquire full ownership of Lookout Point, whose credits include Ripper Street and the BBC’s recent adaptation of War and Peace, in the future.
BBC Worldwide and Lookout Point began their relationship in 2010 with a first look distribution deal. This developed into a co-venture agreement for production financing and distribution and subsequently BBC Worldwide bought a 35 percent stake.
The increased stake will “enable BBC Worldwide to support Lookout Point in its next phase of development, as Lookout Point expands to produce and launch a number of new high-profile productions, continuing its evolution from co-producer and arranger of finance to global producer,” the partners said.
Founded in 2009, the company’s 2016 productions include Mike Bartlett’s newspaper drama Press, co-produced with Nigel Stafford-Clark/Deep Indigo and BBC Studios for BBC One; Andrew Davies’ upcoming adaptation of Les Miserables, co-produced with BBC Studios for BBC One, and Oliver Goldstick’s drama set in a post-war Paris fashion house, The Collection, for Amazon Prime and France Televisions.
Said Simon Vaughan, chairman and joint CEO of Lookout Point: “The expanded stake that BBC Worldwide has now taken in the company gives Lookout Point further stability and commitment to progress our growth plans, whilst allowing us to retain our independence and entrepreneurial spirit.”
Helen Jackson, BBC Worldwide’s chief content officer, said: “The drama genre now accounts for around half our investment and half our sales, and our appetite for high-end scripted British content shows no sign of diminishing. Lookout Point has been part of the BBC Worldwide family for over five years now, and with its increasing focus on its own production capability, this is a logical progression of the close partnership we first forged in 2010. This is exciting news for creators and lovers of British drama across the world.”
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