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Digital Content Int’l buys into Nordic World

Digital Content International (DCI), the US licensing and distribution firm launched by industry veteran Michael Jay Solomon, has acquired Scandinavian sales house Nordic World and is set to merge their operations.

Michael Jay Solomon

Solomon and Nordic World CEO Espen Huseby announced today that DCI had acquired a “significant stake” in Nordic World.

The deal will see Nordic World’s slate of TV drama, formats and documentaries increase their international footprint through DCI’s global distribution network.

Nordic World will remain headquartered in the Norwegian capital Oslo and its executives, some currently based in London and New York, will join forces with DCI’s management team.

DCI’s sales and acquisition executives currently operate exclusively in Europe, Australasia, China, Africa and Latin America.

A production unit planned to open in Los Angeles will handle the companies’ portfolio of projects.

Nordic World was at Mipcom to promote its format Maniac, starring Emma Stone and Jonah Hill and now in production, and to introduce the second season of Norsemen to the international market.

The news follows last year’s management buy-out of Nordic World, led by Huseby, from its previous owner, Norwegian broadcaster TV2.

Solomon, CEO of DCI and a former president of Warner Bros International Television, said: “The old world, where audiences’ choice was limited to local programming and exports from the USA, is gone.

“Accelerated adoption of digital consumption and the growth of OTT channels gives global audiences more programming alternatives. It is therefore crucial for a global player like DCI to partner with companies that have built a strong local foothold but also have the talent, ability and ambition to create content the whole world can enjoy.”

Espen Huseby

In 1978, Solomon co-founded Telepictures which later merged with Lorimar and was then bought by Warner Bros. In 1984, Solomon co-founded HBO Ole, now HBO Latin America.

Since then he has partnered with Shanghai Media Group Broadband and Israeli company Ray-V to stream Chinese-language broadcast networks live outside China. His latest venture, Truli Media Group, of which he is founder and chairman, is a digital platform focusing on family and faith content.

Huseby said: “The arrival of Michael Jay Solomon as partner to Nordic World will bring us huge entertainment business acumen and entrepreneurial experience that will be instrumental in pushing the company into the next phase of growth.

“The deal will ensure our continued investment in new content and considerably develop the business worldwide as partner of DCI’s global network. DCI has immediate access and established relationships with both Hollywood Studios and independent content providers all over the world.”

Stockholm-based media finance and business development company Involvy, headed by TV Norge founder Ola Steinsrud and Xavier Ritort, co-founder of MagineTV, brokered the deal.

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