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Ten Alps buys Reef, Geldof exits

Ten Alps has acquired factual producer Reef Television, while the UK indie group’s founder, Sir Bob Geldof, has stepped down from the board.

Richard Farnborough

Richard Farmbrough

Ten Alps acquired Reef for £2m (US$3.1m) initially, potentially rising by a further £3m. Reef will also have a share and cash earn-out over three years.

Reef, which is behind More4’s Selling Houses With Amanda Lamb, will join firms such as Brook Lapping and Films of Record in the Ten Alps stable.

Reef founder and chief executive Richard Farmbrough will retain his position but will also become commercial director of Ten Alps Group. Fiona Stourton will continue as creative director of Ten Alps’ television operation.

Geldof will step down from the board to be replaced by former Channel 4 chairman Luke Johnson, who joins as non-executive director. Entrepreneur Jonathan Goodwin will also take a seat on the board, with Peter Bertram remaining as chair.

The acquisition constitutes a reverse takeover of the company, where a private company goes public without a public share offering. The move is subject to approval from shareholders at the firm’s general meeting on July 10. Ten Alps has also raised £4.5m in capital in a new funding round and restructured its debt.

In 2013, Ten Alps raised £1m (US$1.5m) from a share placing as it looked to reduce its debt.

The firm refinanced in 2010 after recording a £13m loss in the first half of the year when the UK government withdrew funding for its Teachers TV network. That left it nursing a bank debt of £6.65m, which was reduced to £4.43m in the refinancing.

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