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Sky buys into US prodco Jupiter

UK paycaster Sky has acquired a majority stake in US-based independent non-scripted producer Jupiter Entertainment.

Jupiter ascending:  Stephen Land

Jupiter ascending:
Stephen Land

Sky has taken a 60% stake in the factual outfit for an undisclosed sum, as part of its strategy to add to its broadcasting, production and distribution assets on both sides of the Atlantic.

The European pay-TV giant already has stakes in Love Productions in the UK and LA-based Znak & Jones, while it also has development deals with Ugly Brother Studios in the US and Roughcut TV in the UK, among others.

As part of the deal with Jupiter, Sky’s distribution arm, Sky Vision, will become distribution partner and will represent its forthcoming finished programmes and formats.

Jupiter’s existing agreements with other broadcasters and distributors will remain unchanged, while it will continue to operate as a distinct company under the new ownership structure, producing programmes for a variety of broadcasters, Sky said.

Founded in 1996 by Stephen Land, the prodco is behind factual series such as Welcome to Myrtle Manor (TLC), Wild West Alaska (Animal Planet) and Homicide Hunter (ID).

The company has corporate offices in Knoxville, Tennessee, as well as New York City and a post-production arm in LA.

Jane Millichip

Jane Millichip

The firm recently formed a multi-year ‘first-look’ partnership with Random House that will see it adapt the publisher’s assets as non-fiction television and digital properties.

Jane Millichip, MD, Sky Vision, said: “We look forward to working with Stephen, who is one of America’s most prolific television executives, and his talented team. They have an exciting slate of returning series and new formats, and Jupiter will become an important partner for Sky Vision as we build our presence in the US market.”

Stephen Land, CEO and executive producer, Jupiter Entertainment, added: “Combining Jupiter’s strong domestic growth with Sky’s global reach creates thrilling possibilities. We have ambitious growth plans and believe our employees and network partners will all benefit from this exciting combination.”

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