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Private investment firm RedBird IMI acquires All3Media in $1.45bn deal

Format hit The Traitors is among All3Media’s high-profile properties

The long-running saga over the ownership of All3Media is over, with private investment company RedBird IMI buying the European production and distribution group for £1.15bn (US$1.45bn).

The private investment company, led by former CNN chief Jeff Zucker and Gerry Cardinal, has been in pole position in the protracted takeover battle since the end of last year and confirmed the deal today.

All3Media, which counts hit format The Traitors as part of its catalogue, was jointly owned by Warner Bros Discovery and John Malone’s Liberty Global. It comprises more than 50 production companies, including Studio Lambert, Raw, Two Brothers Pictures, Silverback Films, New Pictures and Neal Street Productions.

Jeff Zucker

Zucker, the CEO of RedBird IMI, will become the chairman of the All3Media board. Jane Turton (CEO) and Sara Geater (chief operating officer) will continue to lead the company for RedBird IMI.

Zucker said: “All3Media is one of the world’s great content companies, and this gives us an incredible platform to continue to grow our expanding portfolio. The demand for new shows and ongoing existing series, both scripted and unscripted, makes All3 a perfect fit for us. And we would not be doing this if not for the tremendous confidence we have in the outstanding All3Media management team, led by Jane and Sara.”

Turton added: “Joining forces with Jeff and the RedBird IMI team is an exciting next step for us as we continue to build All3Media. Our strategy remains to work with the world’s best talent, developing and producing high-quality, popular programmes, and RedBird IMI’s support and investment will be key in helping us deliver this.

“I am very proud of all that we have built over the past few years, and I am looking forward to working with the RedBird IMI team as we take this important next step.”

Jane Turton

Multiple buyers have been in the frame to land the group since it went on the block at the start of last year, with rival European firm Banijay said to be among the early frontrunners.

In July, UK broadcaster ITV said it was “actively exploring” the possibility of buying All3Media, but the following month said it was no longer active in its interest but was continuing to monitor the situation.

Others that have previously been linked with a potential bid include Peter Chernin’s The North Road Company, Sony and Goldman Sachs.

Launched a year ago, RedBird IMI is a joint venture between private investment firms RedBird Capital Partners and Abu Dhabi-based International Media Investments.

At the time of its launch, it said it was focused on acquiring and investing in “large-scale media, entertainment and sports content properties on a global basis.”

Over the summer, RedBird IMI backed the launch of a New York-based unscripted studio, EverWonder Studio, led by the former president and chief operating officer of Time, Ian Orefice. More recently it invested in The Morning Show prodco Media Res.

All3Media, which produces and distributes titles including The Traitors, Googlebox, Wild Isles, Fleabag and Midsomer Murders, comprises more than 50 production labels and a distribution catalogue of more than 30,000.

The company enjoyed its best ever year in 2022, with revenue of £1.02bn and £100.2m in EBITDA.

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