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Goldfinch’s Rock Oyster agrees buyout

Rock Oyster Media is behind Ainsley’s Food We Love

UK-based producer Rock Oyster Media (ROM) has agreed a management buyout with company owner Goldfinch.

ROM founder David Nottage and head of development Charlotte Davis will now run the prodco “under their own steam,” Goldfinch said.

Nottage will serve as MD and Davis as creative director, with Goldfinch remaining a “key strategic partner” of the firm, which is based in Plymouth, Devon.

Goldfinch added that it maintains a significant interest in the projects ROM has produced to date and will continue to provide support for Nottage and Davis. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

ROM, which has been part of Goldfinch since it launched in 2019, has focused on food and travel programming in its first year.

So far, the producer has delivered 50 hours of content to ITV Daytime, including Ainsley’s Food We Love, which airs on ITV1 on a Saturday morning.

ROM said the new management structure would allow it to create a “‘best in class working environment for both staff and freelancers through a portfolio of innovative people-first policies and clear cultural values.”

Goldfinch Group has expertise across finance, production, facilities and management in film, television and video games.

Goldfinch said it had financed more than £20m (US$25m) worth of projects in the past six months, including CEO Kirsty Bell’s Covid-19-compliant drama Alone, starring Derek Jacobi, Jeff Fahey, Sadie Frost and Julie Dray, and upcoming documentary Quant.

C21 reported earlier this month that Eric Woollard-White, Goldfinch’s head of television, had left the company after two years.

Goldfinch said it would continue to focus on supporting TV production companies from a finance, executive producing and strategic perspective.

Bell said: “Our aim at Goldfinch is to support a range of companies and productions. Ensuring the management teams are incentivised to achieve and to share risk is key.

“This, alongside our creation of our talent management hub The Koop, and several projects completed and in production, shows that despite Covid-19, 2020 has been a key year in our progress. We look forward to continuing our relationship with ROM and wish Eric all the best for the future.”

Nottage added: “We’ve had a flying start with the support and backing of Goldfinch, for which we are enormously grateful. We are delighted that both businesses will continue to benefit from the work we’ve done together.

“Charlotte and I now have the opportunity to develop Rock Oyster from our new HQ in Plymouth, growing the people-first, inventive, mischievous and proudly regional indie we’ve both always wanted to work in.”

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