MTG acquires leading content production and distribution companies

June 13 2013

Modern Times Group MTG AB (publ.) (‘MTG’ or ‘the Group’), the international entertainment broadcasting group, today announced that it has completed the acquisition of 92.4% of Digital Rights Group Ltd (‘DRG’), which is the leading UK-based content distribution company, for an enterprise value of GBP 15 million, and completed the acquisition of 51% of Novemberfilm A/S (‘Novemberfilm’), which is a Norwegian production company, for an undisclosed cash consideration. The shares in DRG have been acquired from majority shareholder Ingenious Media Active Capital Ltd, as well as a number of private shareholders, with the remaining 7.6% of the shares to be held by the DRG CEO and management team. The shares in Novemberfilm have been acquired from the company’s current management, with the remaining 49% of the company continuing to be owned by members of the management team.

DRG is the UK’s leading independent TV rights distribution group, and provides TV producers and broadcasters with international distribution for their rights and programmes. DRG acquires rights to finished programmes and formats and sells these to international broadcasters. DRG operates across multi-genres with a focus on high-quality programming, with titles including Doc Martin, The Inbetweeners, Singing Bee, Kingdom, Sea Patrol and Criminal Justice. DRG is based in London, was founded in 2006, and has 32 employees. DRG provides MTG Studios with access to a network of international production companies and creative talent. The company generated preliminary and unaudited revenues of GBP 23.4 million and EBITDA of GBP 1.6 million in the twelve months to 31 March 2013. MTG expects the company to generate increased revenues and profits in the coming years and to realise synergies from the combination of the business with MTG Studios. Founder and former DRG CEO Jeremy Fox will rejoin the company as CEO and replace Jonathan Jackson, current Managing Director of DRG, who has decided to leave the company.

Novemberfilm is a Norwegian production company with offices in Oslo and Arendal, was established in 2004 and has 12 employees. The company is focused on the production of TV series and advertising commercials for both the Norwegian and international markets. Key formats include The Zookeepers, Insider and Missing. The company’s current management, who are selling the shares, will remain with the Group after the integration of Novemberfilm within MTG Studios. Strix Norway and Novemberfilm already have a successful track record of working together on productions such as Insider. Novemberfilm generated revenues of SEK 17 million in the twelve months to 31 December 2012 and an operating profit of SEK 5 million.

MTG Studios has now assumed operational control over the businesses and will consolidate DRG and Novemberfilm’s financial results in its accounts. The companies’ results will be reported within MTG Studios and be included in the “Other Businesses” section of MTG’s segmental financial reporting matrix.

Jørgen Madsen Lindemann, President and CEO of MTG, commented: “These acquisitions reflect our strategy of increasing our international content rights portfolio, and broadening our international customer base. I look forward to welcoming these talented teams into MTG.”

“We are very happy to welcome Jeremy Fox back as CEO for DRG. He and the rest of the team will be a valuable addition to the MTG Studios team. That also goes for Novemberfilm, which provides us with a strong and exciting addition to MTG Studio’s current content portfolio in Norway.”

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