ITV will make an upfront cash payment for a 51% stake in DiGa Vision with a put and call option to buy the remainder of the company. The put and call option could be exercised from between three and six years, with the total amount paid linked to the performance of the company over that period. The multiple paid is similar to the range paid on ITV’s previous acquisitions.
The acquisition represents another step forward in ITV’s strategy of building a strong international content business and adds to the Group’s growing portfolio of production companies on both sides of the Atlantic. It follows ITV’s acquisition in the last 18 months of Gurney Productions, High Noon Entertainment and Thinkfactory Media in the U.S. as well as U.K. producers The Garden and Big Talk.
Since launching DiGa Vision in 2011, former MTV executives Tony DiSanto and Liz Gateley have successfully developed a slate of original programming with 12 series given the green light. Last year saw 36 episodes of new series including Girl Get Your Mind Right and primetime drama Ke$ha: Crazy Beautiful Life – both for MTV – with auction-based format Celebrity Home Raiders to air on Lifetime in March. MTV also commissioned series 3 and 4 of DiGa Vision’s hit series Teen Wolf, airing 24 episodes last year.
Paul Buccieri, President & CEO, ITV Studios U.S. Group, said: “Tony and Liz have an excellent track record in creating original, engaging and compelling reality and scripted programming with an impressive content pipeline which feeds into numerous networks. They’re a true creative force and will be a great addition to the ITV Studios U.S. Group of companies.
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