Left to right: Kelly McPherson, Emre Sahin and Sarah Wetherbee
BERLIN — ProSiebenSat.1’s Red Arrow Entertainment Group has acquired Los Angeles-based Karga Seven Pictures, marking the latest step in the Munich-based company’s ongoing expansion in the U.S. production market.
Founded in 2008 by Sarah Wetherbee, Emre Sahin and Kelly McPherson, Karga Seven develops and produces factual entertainment, including non-scripted and scripted programs for a wide selection of U.S. cable channels, as well as feature films. The company has produced more than 300 hours of programming, including “Booze Traveler” for Travel Channel, “How Booze Built America” for Discovery Channel, “Futurescape” for Science Channel, “Cry Wolfe” for Discovery ID and “Hunting Hitler” for History Channel. Also active in Turkey, Karga has an office in Istanbul.
Wetherbee, Sahin and McPherson will continue to oversee Karga, which will now have worldwide distribution through Red Arrow’s sales arm, Red Arrow Intl.
The acquisition strengthens Red Arrow’s foothold in the U.S. while also beefing up its factual programming slate and global distribution business.
Speaking to Variety, Red Arrow CEO Jan Frouman said growing global demand for factual entertainment was evident and he expected an “extremely close, well-coordinated and collaborative relationship between Karga and Red Arrow Intl.” to deliver “more high-quality and coveted factual programming that we think can travel globally.”
Frouman stressed that Karga was particularly interesting for Red Arrow because it produces “a lot of programming which is subject driven, topic driven, and not necessarily beholden to a single face or some character who may or may not translate into other territories.”
Wetherbee added that while Karga “always had an eye towards international, now we have a direct pipeline.” Indeed, the company will be able to take advantage of Red Arrow’s international reach by working together at the development stage to determine other potential markets for specific productions, Wetherbee said. “Red Arrow’s track record speaks for itself. Their global reach will play a key role in us expanding our scripted and unscripted footprint across various platforms.”
With its experience in the Turkish market, Karga also sees opportunities in Germany, which boasts the largest Turkish population outside of Turkey. Karga’s second feature film, the comedy “Takim,” directed by Sahin, hit Turkish theaters last month and will next be released in Germany.
Red Arrow has stakes in 12 TV production companies spanning six countries, including U.S. firms Half Yard Productions, Nerd TV, Kinetic Content, Fabrik Entertainment and Left/Right Productions. Recent productions from its U.S. companies include Amazon’s “Bosch”; Bravo’s “Odd Mom Out”; A&E and FYI’s “Married at First Sight”; and Animal Planet’s “The Last Alaskans.”
The companies declined to provide financial details of the deal.