Southern Star Duplitek in Technicolor green

Manufacturer invests in CD, DVD pressing co.

SYDNEY — Carlton Communications’ American subsid Technicolor is making an A$33 million ($20 million) investment in Southern Star Duplitek, the CD and DVD pressing biz of Australian entertainment major Southern Star.

Investment by Technicolor, the world’s largest manufacturer and distrib of videos, CDs, DVDs and film prints, will be used by Southern Star to acquire competing Oz pressing business Pacific Mirror Image for $17 million. Technicolor will emerge with up to a 32% equity stake in the merged SSD-PMI business, which will have revenue of $60 million, and Technicolor has rights to up its stake in the future.

The deal “provides Technicolor with a strategic platform from which to access and serve growing markets in Australia and the Pacific Rim,” said Technicolor Group chief executive Lanny Raimondo.

“Technicolor’s commitment to Southern Star Duplitek is expected to grow over the coming years as we expand our manufacturing operations to accommodate a customer base that includes major Hollywood studios, international record companies and leading information and software providers,” added Southern Star executive chairman Neil Balnaves.

Hard times for cash cow

Duplitek has long been the cash cow of Southern Star, which, like other Oz majors, has been hard hit by the downturn in Euro demand for foreign programming. It has all but mothballed its film activities, steeply written down the value of its inventory and slashed staffing levels by 27%.

Southern Star has long been rumored to be a takeover target, with suitors last year thought to be Carlton and Endemol.

Last week, Southern Star merged its light entertainment and infotainment activities into a joint venture with Holland’s Endemol, giving it Australian and New Zealand rights to the Dutch major’s catalog, while Endemol will sell internationally all shows produced by the joint venture as well as Southern Star’s entire infotainment catalog.

More Biz

  • Bert Salke and Jennifer Salke

    Feds Looked Into Amazon Studios Chief Jennifer Salke in College Admissions Scandal

    Federal investigators looked into Amazon Studios chief Jennifer Salke and her husband, Fox 21 Television Studios president Bert Salke, as they conducted a sprawling probe of cheating in elite college admissions, a source close to the case told Variety. It does not appear, however, that prosecutors will charge the Salkes in the case. The Salkes [...]

  • Variety Cord Cutting Placeholder Cable

    Big Blackout Looms as CBS, AT&T Go Down to Wire on Renewal Talks

    A blackout affecting CBS stations in major markets throughout the country looms as CBS and AT&T executives go down to the wire on negotiations for a retransmission consent deal covering 28 O&O stations. The sides have sparred publicly during the past few days as 11 p.m. PT Friday expiration of the previous contract approached. AT&T [...]

  • Contract Placeholder Business WGA ATA Agent

    ICM Responds to WGA Packaging Lawsuit: Claims are 'Baseless' and 'Absurd'

    ICM Partners has asked a judge to dismiss the lawsuit filed against four major talent agencies by the Writers Guild of America as part of the larger war between agencies and the guild over packaging fees on TV series and movies. The guild sued ICM, CAA, WME and UTA in California state court in April, [...]

  • New York City NYC Placeholder

    CityFM Podcast Takes a Deep Look at New York’s Music Scene (Listen)

    First among the many projects listed at the beginning of New York Music Month in June was a WNYE radio show and podcast called CityFM that promised to “explore the city’s music culture, emerging artists and trends, and upcoming events told through the lens of what’s happening around the city in Summer 2019.” And while [...]

  • Live Nation Logo. (PRNewsFoto/Live Nation)

    Live Nation Confirms Placing Tickets Directly on Secondary Market at Artists’ Request

    Representatives for Live Nation, the world’s largest live-entertainment company and owner of Ticketmaster, confirmed that it bypassed conventional channels and directly placed thousands of concert tickets on the secondary market upon artists’ request, in an article published in Billboard. In a statement shared with Variety, the company acknowledged that it has facilitated the transfer of [...]

  • Costume designer Michele Clapton

    Costume Designers Fashion a Plan to Fight for Pay Parity in Upcoming Contract Talks

    The Costume Designers Guild Local 892 is gearing up to fight for pay equity in its 2021 contract negotiations with the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, establishing a pay-equity committee to raise awareness of the scale disparity between the mostly female CDG membership and the mostly male membership of the Art Directors Guild Local [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content