Media company pacts with Omnicom
RDF Media is getting into the branded entertainment space in a big way, pacting with Omnicom Media Group to take on oversight of OMG’s Full Circle Entertainment.Under the new venture, RDF Media USA — headed by chief exec Chris Coelen — becomes the majority stakeholder in Full Circle Entertainment, which will operate as an independent entity under RDF. CEO Robert Riesenberg will continue to lead Full Circle. The RDF/OMG venture also goes beyond Full Circle, as Omnicom will help with product integration across RDF’s TV and digital slate. Partnership now gives OMG and Full Circle access to RDF’s global production and distribution machine, as well as its stable of talent; meanwhile, RDF can tap into the leverage and clout of Omnicom, one of the world’s largest advertising and marketing services companies. “In a changing industry, we’re keenly aware that the role of the advertiser has never been more important,” Coelen said. “Combining Omnicom’s powerful relationships and leverage with RDF’s production and distribution capabilities, RDF has gained a major advantage.” Riesenberg will report to Coelen in the new setup, while Full Circle falls under the RDF Media USA umbrella, which includes RDF USA — producer of such nonscripted series as “Wife Swap” and “Secret Millionaire” — as well as scripted sister Pangea, Pangea Management Group and RDF USA Digital. Since its inception five years ago, Full Circle has produced more than 100 hours of programming with 25 national advertisers (such as AT&T, Heineken and Allied Domecq) for networks including NBC, Fox, ESPN, TBS, TNT, Bravo and Spike. With RDF’s oversight, Full Circle will continue to create content for, with and around brands, sometimes funded by those brands. Full Circle will also continue to work with advertisers outside OMG and producers outside RDF in the new setup. But as part of the venture, RDF and Full Circle will serve as OMG’s primary content development partners. “For Full Circle Entertainment to continue to thrive, I’ve always felt that in addition to the OMG relationship, we needed to align ourselves with an established company, like RDF, that can provide us with expanded production and distribution capabilities in the world market,” Riesenberg said. RDF execs called the arrangement “transformative,” allowing both sides to come up with different creative and financial programming deals depending on the advertiser and network. The partnership already has deal templates set up at two major networks. Riesenberg will bring his five-member staff with him to the new enterprise.