Buenafuente buys back company
MADRID — In a surprise about-face, Gaul’s Banijay Entertainment has sold Spanish production company El Terrat back to its original owner, prexy Andreu Buenafuente, just three months after announcing its purchase.The buy-back comes after what is described by the two ex-partners as an “amicable split” following a divergence of opinions on production strategies in the face of deteriorating market conditions in Spain. Buenafuente fronts El Terrat’s best known show, late-night yakker “Buenafuente.” Paris-based Banijay has been circling other Spanish companies and may well announce a new acquisition in the next few weeks. Created by former Endemol France CEO Stephane Courbit, Banijay is backed by Courbit’s family investment arm Financiere LOV. The remaining 51% in Banijay Holding is equally split between France’s Arnault Group, the Agnelli family’s investment arm IFIL, and the De Agostini family via its private equity vehicle DeA Capital. In France, Banijay has bought Air Prods., owned by gameshow host Nagui Fam. It has also taken a 51% stake in former “Big Brother” presenter Benjamin Castaldi’s JEF Prods. and created ALJ Prods. with Alexia Larouche-Joubert, formerly Endemol France’s director-cum-reality TV presenter. Banijay has also acquired Russian company Intelegencia.