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ILP wins rights to 12 literary estates

International Literary Properties (ILP), the IP management company helmed in the UK by former Agatha Christie Ltd CEO Hilary Strong, has acquired rights to the literary estates of 12 writers, including Maigret creator Georges Simenon.

Hilary Strong

ILP secured the rights in an eight-figure deal with literary and talent agency Peters, Fraser + Dunlop, allowing them to exploit the authors’ titles across television, theatre and film.

Alongside Simenon, the deal includes the literary estates of Eric Ambler, Margery Allingham, Edmund Crispin, Dennis Wheatley, Robert Bolt, Richard Hull, George Bellairs, Nicolas Freeling, John Creasey, Michael Innes and Evelyn Waugh.

ILP launched in November last year to acquire the rights to literary estates from those who have inherited them or from living authors. This is the company’s first major slate of acquisitions, which will now manage the estates and work with agents to support their exploitation across different media.

The business is led in the UK by Strong and production collective Anthology Group founder Bob Benton, with its New York operation headed by book industry veteran Scott Hoffman as group CEO and executive chairman Ted Green, the former CEO of RLJ Entertainment. Peters, Fraser + Dunlop will continue as literary agents for the 12 estates.

Strong and Benton will handle the UK and Europe, with chief financial officer Andrew Minkow and Polly Benton, who heads business development.

Strong said the acquisitions marked an important step in building the business.

“International Literary Properties was formed late last year, bringing together an incredible team with many decades of experience in literary, TV, film, music and theatre management and exploitation. This major acquisition plays to the team’s experience and strengths and I am truly excited by the opportunity to nurture these 12 wonderful estates and how to find new and exciting ways of telling the great stories that lie within them,” she said.

Hoffman added: “When we launched ILP, it was our vision to build a portfolio of some of the world’s most important and iconic literary works with an eye toward preserving their creators’ legacies and ensuring they would bring enjoyment to readers for decades to come. This acquisition is a major step towards that goal.”


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