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Sonar detects $121m production injection

Sonar’s Das Boot has been acquired across all types of platforms

Das Boot coproducer Sonar Entertainment has raised more than US$120m of production financing through a funding round led by debt solutions firm MidCap Financial.

The US independent studio, which has grown rapidly since 2016 through the successes of acclaimed series such as Mr Mercedes and multilingual World War Two drama Das Boot, will use the US$121m extra funding to develop, produce, finance and distribute premium television content on a global basis.

Including Mr Mercedes, which has been renewed for a third season, and the recently recommissioned Das Boot, Sonar has 17 series on air and in production, an additional 21 projects with networks and a further 40 in the pipeline.

These titles include AMC drama The Son, starring Pierce Brosnan, Jordan Peele’s The Hunt and Weird City for Amazon and YouTube respectively, and documentary series Lorena.

It also distributes hit BBC period drama Taboo internationally, and has sold Das Boot into more than 100 territories.

Sonar will use the new funding to expand its non-scripted and kids’ and family programming. Along with Lorena, the company has an AI documentary series produced with Robert Downey Jr for YouTube Premium. It also has Disney children’s animation Go Away, Unicorn! on its books, as well as Counterfeit Cat, which airs on Disney XD in the US, Teletoon in Canada and in 200 countries worldwide through streamer Hulu.

“Sonar has continued to build its position as the leading independent TV studio through new series successes and expansion into kids’ and family and non-scripted programming,” said Sonar CEO Tom Lesinski.

“Having significant and flexible production financing is core to our ability to meet the needs of our talented partners and create even more opportunities in bringing premium programming to the market.

“This is particularly important as networks and digital platforms continue to focus on high-end original programming as the most significant driver of ratings, subscriber growth and audience retention.”

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