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23/2/2016

Banijay Group announces that Banijay-Zodiak merger transaction has completed

CREATING THE WORLD’S LARGEST INDEPENDENT PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION GROUP

Paris, 23 February  –  It was announced today by Banijay Group that leading international entertainment entities Banijay and Zodiak Media have today completed the transaction to unite their complementary catalogues and production units.

Operating from today, the newly-created Banijay Group is 73.8% controlled by a company composed of Stéphane Courbit’s LOV Group (50.1%) and DeA Communications – a company belonging to De Agostini Group (49.9%), with Vivendi owning 26.2% of the total Group.

Stéphane Courbit is named Chairman and Marco Bassetti is appointed CEO of Banijay Group.

With revenues of around US$1 billion, the completed merger has created the world’s biggest independent production company and the largest not controlled by a media group.

The new Group, which already boasts the leading production companies in many countries, now has operations in 17 territories producing entertainment, drama, factual, reality entertainment, docu-drama, children’s and animation programming.  Leading formats and shows include Versailles, The Secret Life of Four Year Olds, Temptation Island, Popstars, Beat Your Host, 71 Degrees North, Keeping up with the Kardashians, Fort Boyard, Making of the Mob, Underbelly, Wife Swap, Wild Things, Being Human, Location Location Location and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo among many others.

Stéphane Courbit commented, “I am very pleased to confirm the merger of two such successful and innovative companies. I have every confidence that this strong group of managers and creative talent will thrive on the global stage. It is my pleasure to welcome Vivendi to our new Group and we look forward to a prosperous future together.”

Lorenzo Pellicioli, CEO of De Agostini Group, stated, “The merger between Banijay and Zodiak Media, two companies of which De Agostini Group has been a shareholder since the very beginning, creates a real leading international player. Indeed I firmly believe that – thanks to the quality and size of the product portfolio, the geographical footprint, the excellence of the management team and the support of the shareholders – the new Group will be well-equipped to compete on a global basis in the creation, production and distribution of television content.”

Arnaud de Puyfontaine, Chief Executive Officer of Vivendi, said, "Vivendi is delighted to be part of this new global powerhouse in independent content production and distribution. One of our Group’s main goals is to invest in companies developing world-class, original programming. Banijay Group combines strong international creative talent with an extremely wide range of television shows and formats. I am convinced the new merged entity has all the skills and assets to deliver compelling entertainment for multi-platform media audiences.”

Marco Bassetti commented, “Banijay and Zodiak bring together teams of leading programming creators, producers and format developers from around the world and a well-established international distribution arm with an extensive catalogue.  Our united Group has strength in both its talent and assets to deliver a wide and diverse range of winning content across multiple platforms; maximizing our global footprint and optimizing our business opportunities.”

Sophie Kurinckx is promoted to CFO of the entire Group.

Both companies’ international distribution operations are merging and will be led by Tim Mutimer who has become Head of Distribution of Banijay Group. The distribution arm will keep the name of Zodiak Rights.

Frédérique Sauvage has been appointed General Counsel of Banijay Group.

Ends

For further information, please contact:

Debbie Lawrence

The Lippin Company Ltd on behalf of Banijay Group

T: +44 (0) 7771850580

dlawrence@lippingroup.com

 

About Banijay Group:

Banijay Group is the world’s largest independent content creation Group for television and multimedia platforms.  With leading production entities in more than seventeen territories, the Group is engaged in strategic partnerships with innovative creative talent around the world.

The Group’s growing library of formats and programming, as well as acquired third-party content, totals more than 20,000 hours spanning entertainment, factual, drama, factual entertainment, kids and reality; and is licensed internationally by its global distribution arm Zodiak Rights.

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