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Lionsgate buys into UK kids’ prodco

Jamillah and Aladdin

Kindle Entertainment’s Jamillah and Aladdin

The UK arm of US studio Lionsgate has taken a minority stake in London-based drama and comedy prodco Kindle Entertainment.

Under the deal – financial terms of which have not been disclosed – Lionsgate UK will own a 25% stake in the firm.

Kindle has been named best indie at the Children’s Bafta awards in the UK three times in the past six year and also produces CBBC web series Dixi, which won best digital original at this year’s C21 International Drama Awards.

The company was launched by Anne Brogan and Melanie Stokes in 2007 and has produced series such as Jamillah and Aladdin and Hank Zipzer for the BBC’s children’s channels.

The Kindle stake marks Lionsgate’s first move into UK television production, having previously focused on distribution and feature film activity in the European market. Its roster of US shows includes Orange is the New Black, Mad Men and The Royals.

Brogan and Stokes said in a joint statement that the partnership would help the company grow its primetime comedy and drama portfolio.

Zygi Kamasa, CEO of Lionsgate’s European Office and the head of Lionsgate UK said: “Our new strategic partnership broadens and deepens our support of British filmed entertainment, continues the diversification of our business and capitalizes on the momentum already established by Lionsgate’s growing worldwide television operations.”

Lionsgate Television Group chairman Kevin Beggs added that Kindle was the “first step” in plans for his firm to grow its television footprint in the UK: “Zygi Kamasa has already established a strong and distinctive Lionsgate UK film brand, and the Kindle Entertainment investment creates fresh opportunities to expand his portfolio of businesses in one of our most important territories.”

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