Bubble Communications acquires VOX National Events

Bubble Communications, the PR, marketing and events agency specialising in the media and entertainment technology and services sectors, has acquired VOX National Events, the established organiser and producer of the VOX Summit (the UK conference for the voiceover and audio industry), VOX Awards and VOXMAS festive party. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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Posy Brewer and Sadie Groom

“As the organiser of many events including awards ceremonies, conferences, product launches and social events, this acquisition opportunity was a perfect fit with our PR and marketing work in the pro-audio and production communities,” said Sadie Groom, Managing Director, Bubble Communications. “Posy has built an amazing business which attracts the top level of talent in the voiceover community. We are excited to build on the events and community she has created and take them to the next level.”

Posy Brewer, owner of VOX, commented, “Bubble and VOX National Events come together to create the perfect match with their deep industry roots and well-respected brands. Sadie and her team are brilliant at what they do, and I’m thrilled to see Bubble taking over the helm of VOX and building on the solid and well-established foundations to promote audio excellence to its optimum level.

UK, Pinewood Studios & Guildford

 

Meredith Corporation To Acquire Time Inc. To Create Premier Media And Marketing Company

Time Inc.Meredith Corporation has announced that it has entered into a binding agreement to acquire all outstanding shares of Time Inc. for $18.50 per share in an all-cash transaction valued at $2.8 billion, expected to close during the first quarter of calendar 2018.

The deal will create a diversified media and marketing company with $4.8 billion in revenues, including $2.7 billion of advertising revenues. Additionally, Meredith anticipates generating cost synergies of $400 million to $500 million in the first full two years of operation.

Time Inc. is a multinational mass media corporation which owns and publishes over 100 magazine brands, including its namesake Time, Sports Illustrated, Travel + Leisure, Food & Wine, Fortune, People, InStyle, Life, Golf Magazine, Southern Living, Essence, Real Simple, and Entertainment Weekly. It also has subsidiaries which it co-operates with the UK magazine house Time Inc. UK, whose major titles include What’s on TV, NME, Country Life, and Wallpaper. Time Inc. also co-operates over 60 websites and digital-only titles.

“We are creating a premier media company serving nearly 200 million American consumers across industry-leading digital, television, print, video, mobile, and social platforms positioned for growth,” said Meredith Corporation Chairman and CEO Stephen M. Lacy. “We are adding the rich content-creation capabilities of some of the media industry’s strongest national brands to a powerful local television business that is generating record earnings, offering advertisers and marketers unparalleled reach to American adults.”

Rich Battista, President and CEO of Time Inc., stated, “I am proud of our accomplishments and thank the talented teams across the Company for their extraordinary work, relentless commitment, and passion. Together, we moved quickly and successfully to launch, grow, and advance our multi-platform offerings during unprecedented times in the media sector. Time Inc. now engages over 230 million consumers across digital and print every month through a portfolio of premium, iconic brands that are well positioned to continue to be powerful voices in media for many years to come.”

USA, New York, NY, Desmoines, IA

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CBS Corporation acquires Network Ten in Australia

CBSCBS Corporation has acquired Network Ten, one of three major commercial broadcast networks in Australia. The terms of the deal were not disclosed.

This transaction adds Network Ten to CBS Corporation’s global content and distribution portfolios. In addition to core linear channel TEN, the deal includes digital terrestrial television (DTT) channel ELEVEN, which CBS already had a stake in, as well as the DTT channel ONE and Network Ten’s rapidly growing digital platform, TENPLAY.

“The closing of this acquisition marks the beginning of an exciting opportunity to build and expand on our close working relationship and the great legacy of Network Ten in Australia, and to paving the way for further multiplatform distribution opportunities for CBS content,” said Leslie Moonves, Chairman and CEO, CBS Corporation. “I believe our ownership helps ensure that Network Ten’s business will grow long-term, while also benefiting the Australian Media sector as a whole. We look forward to welcoming Ten and its employees to the CBS family.”

USA, New York & The Netherlands, Amsterdam & Australia, Sydney

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Zinc Media Group to acquire Tern Television Productions

ZincZinc Media Group plc, the TV and multimedia content producer, is to acquire Tern Television Productions Limited, for up to £5.45 million.

In the financial year ended 31 March 2017, Tern’s turnover was approximately £5.3m with profit before tax of approximately £0.3m.

Zinc Media will pay an initial £2 million for Tern, plus £1.1 million for surplus cash and an earnout consideration of up to £2.35 million.

Zinc is raising £3.5m before expenses in an oversubscribed share placing to pay for the deal.

Peter Bertram, Zinc Media’s Chairman, said, “We are delighted to announce this key acquisition for Zinc Media and are delighted to welcome the highly regarded Tern Television team into the Company. We believe this acquisition will place us in a strong position to further expand and grow in an industry which is experiencing ever-increasing demand for original content, due to the rapid growth of connected devices and new TV platforms.”

Tern, established in 1988, is an independent TV production company specialising in factual TV production. The company has key production bases in Scotland and Northern Ireland and typically produces over sixty hours of TV annually for UK broadcasters, including the BBC, Channel 4 and Sky 1, as well as international broadcasters such as Discovery, PBS and National Geographic Channels.  It has won numerous awards including BAFTAs, Prix Italia, Royal Television Society awards and a Cine Golden Eagle. Tern has a profitable track record and reported an increased turnover of approximately £5.3m in the financial year ended 31 March 2017, up from approximately £4.4m in the year ended 31 March 2016.  

UK, Scotland, Edinburgh & Aberdeen

 

Ascential plc acquires MediaLink for up to $207M

ascentialAscential plc the B2B media company, is to acquire US-based media advisory and business services provider MediaLink for an initial cash price of $69 million plus earnouts.

The earnouts are payable over the period to February 2021 based on the adjusted EBITDA of the business for the three years 2017 to 2019 and are expected to total between $42m and $62m. The earnouts are payable in cash or, for certain elements, shares at Ascential’s option and a portion of the earn-out payments is subject to founders remaining in employment with the company. The total aggregate consideration, including initial consideration and earn out payments, is capped at $207m and requires stretching profit targets to be reached.

MediaLink reported unaudited revenue of $54 million and adjusted PBT of $14 million in 2016, with year-on-year growth of 29% and 24% respectively, and had gross assets of $11 million at December 2016.

The company serves the consumer goods and services segment and operates from four offices in the U.S. Michael Kassan founded Medialink in 2003, he will continue to run the business.

Duncan Painter, Chief Executive Officer of Ascential plc, said: “MediaLink is a leader in its industry, with a strong and very visible brand presence in the US. MediaLink is an excellent fit with our existing Ascential offering and I am confident we can help accelerate MediaLink’s business into new markets by using our assets and infrastructure over the coming months and years. I see synergies between MediaLink and our portfolio of products to significantly help accelerate our existing businesses and create additional value for shareholders.”

UK, London & USA, New York, NY

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21st Century Fox makes £11.7bn firm offer for Sky

21st-century-foxRupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox and Sky have reached agreement on the terms of a cash offer by 21st Century Fox for the fully diluted share capital of Sky which 21st Century Fox and its Affiliates do not already own.

The £10.75-a-share all cash offer for the 61 per cent of Sky that the US media group does not already own values the group at £18.5bn, and will cost Fox £11.7bn.

The offer is a multiple of approximately 11.4 times Sky Adjusted EBITDA of £2,178 million for the twelve month period ended 30 June 2016.

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21st Century Fox said:

As the founding shareholder of Sky, we are proud to have participated in its growth and development. The strategic rationale for this combination is clear.  It creates a global leader in content creation and distribution, enhances our sports and entertainment scale, and gives us unique and leading direct-to-consumer capabilities and technologies. It adds the strength of the Sky brand to our portfolio, including the Fox, National Geographic and Star brands.”

“Sky is a creative, commercial, and consumer powerhouse delivering its own content to customers across all platforms. Sky is the #1 PayTV brand in all its key markets, with an exciting growth runway in each. The enhanced capabilities of the combined company will be underpinned by a more geographically diverse and stable revenue base.  It will also create an improved balance between subscription, affiliate fee, advertising and content revenues. This combination creates an agile organization that is equipped to better succeed in a global market.

Martin Gilbert, Deputy Chairman of Sky said:

I am enormously proud that Sky is the number one premium pay TV provider in all its markets and is recognised as a world leading direct-to-consumer business. On top of this, the business has an outstanding track record of growth and has delivered substantial value for its shareholders over many years.

The Independent Committee, which was formed with the express purpose of protecting independent shareholders’ interests in relation to the proposal from 21st Century Fox, has given full consideration to the fundamental value and prospects for the Sky Group.

While the Independent Committee remains confident in Sky’s long-term prospects, as laid out in detail at our recent investor day in October, we, supported by our advisers, believe 21st Century Fox’s offer at a 40 per cent. premium to the undisturbed share price will accelerate and de-risk the delivery of future value for all Sky Shareholders. As a result, the Independent Committee unanimously agreed that we have a proposal that we can put to Sky shareholders and recommend.

The Independent Committee also notes 21st Century Fox’s track record in growing businesses and its ability to continue the development of Sky across Europe, in a world where entertainment and distribution are converging. 21st Century Fox’s ownership will support the delivery of Sky’s strategy and long-term growth, ensuring that it remains at the forefront of Europe’s creative industries.”

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp abandoned its last bid for Sky in 2011 after it was revealed that journalists at the News of the World had hacked the phone of the murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler.

USA, New York & UK, London

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Ten Alps acquires Straker Films

tenalps plcTen Alps, trading as Zinc Media, the TV and multimedia content producer, has acquired Straker Films Limited. Straker Films is a corporate video production business that works with companies and organisations to help them communicate with their customers, staff and the public through moving image.

Ten Alps are paying an initial consideration of £110,000 in cash instalments between completion and September 2016. 3 percent of total sales in the year following completion will be as a deferred consideration if the annual revenues are less than £300,000. This increases to a maximum of 10 per cent. of total sales if the annual revenues are greater than £500,000.

In the year ended 29 February 2016 Straker Films generated revenue of £0.64m and a profit before taxation of £0.19m. As at 29 February 2016 net assets were £0.75m.  Straker Films currently has one employee, who will continue post completion.

Straker Films was founded in 2004 by Nick Straker and Nicola Mann. It has a client base including Rio Tinto, National Grid, TfL, Aviva, Nationwide and The Department for Education.

 Mark Wood, CEO of Ten Alps, comments:  “Ten Alps has already broadened its range of television production through the acquisition of Reef TV and its investment in Chrysalis Vision.  The acquisition of Straker Films gives Ten Alps a significant and credible footprint in the corporate video and story-telling market and we look forward to growing our business in this high growth market.”

Straker Films will be located in Ten Alps’ London office, working with the Ten Alps corporate communications team and the Group’s TV production businesses.  Nick Straker and Nicola Mann will remain as freelance consultants to Straker Films for a period of time to ensure a smooth transition and handover.

UK, London

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