Ben Silverman firm to form global distribution division

Ben Silverman can circle the globe now. His multimedia studio Electus said Tuesday it is purchasing Engine Entertainment to help with worldwide sales of TV, film and digital content from Electus.

Financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed. The buyout will create Electus/Engine Distribution, which will be headed by entertainment vet and Engine CEO Chris Philip. “I’m thrilled to have the Engine team on board, led by an innovator like Chris Philip, to build an exceptional new international distribution arm that taps into unconventional models and platforms, bringing outstanding new content to the world,” said Electus CEO Silverman..”The content distribution business is changing, and I believe Chris and his team are a force in international TV distribution with top-level experience in the global TV industry that will prove to be a huge asset to Electus.”

The former NBC chief formed Electus last July in partnership with Barry Diller’s IAC to create content in large partnerships with marketers.

The Engine deal complements existing distribution agreements that Electus has in place, including one with Elisabeth Murdoch’s Shine Group, which purchased Silverman’s Reveille production company in 2008. Reports surfaced last week that Shine may be on the sales block. One of the interested parties? Murdoch’s father, Rupert, Chairman of News Corp.

Electus and Engine have worked together before. Last year, the two companies co-produced and distributed Thumb Wars, an interactive smart phone treasure hunt game show for the U.S. and global markets, originally brought to Engine by format consultant Michel Rodrigue.

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