Germany’s Red Arrow Entertainment Group continues to expand in the U.S. with a planned majority acquisition of Mikkel Bondesen’s Fuse Entertainment, which produces USA Network’s “Burn Notice” and AMC’s “The Killing.”
Red Arrow said Bondesen, a native of Denmark, was familiar with the European and U.S. markets, “an important prerequisite for the successful future partnership.”
The companies plan on developing and producing scripted formats from Europe for the U.S. market and vice versa. It’s a strategy already employed by Fuse, which landed a hit with “The Killing,” an adaptation of the hit Danish series, “Forbrydelsen.”
“That’s evidence of the potential of European and especially Scandinavian material,” Red Arrow said.
Established in 2005, Fuse has a first-look deal with Fox Television Studios. It also produced the now-canceled Fox action comedy “The Good Guys.”
In addition to Bondesen, Fuse’s exec team includes partner and CEO Henrik Bastin. A renowned producer in his native Sweden, Bastin exec produced ABC’s “My Generation,” sold “Breakshot” to Fox and is exec producing reality skein “Koping/Happy Hearts” for A&E.
“We know how difficult it is to compete in the American market as a producer of fictional programming,” said Red Arrow managing director Jan Frouman. “That’s why we waited for the appropriate time, and more importantly, the right partner.”
Frouman added that the Fuse team’s familiarity with the U.S. and European markets gave the company a significant edge. “We are confident that our output of fictional programming will certainly increase by partnering with Fuse.”
Bondesen added that Fuse had long been looking for ways to develop projects for the U.S. and Europe. “The partnership with Red Arrow is the perfect opportunity.”
Fuse is Red Arrow’s second U.S. acquisition. Last year the company, a subsidiary of pan-European broadcaster ProSiebenSat.1, took a 51% stake in Santa Monica-based Kinetic Content.
Already exhibiting the kind of synergies Red Arrow is aiming for, Kinetic produced Betty White vehicle “Off Their Rockers,” a show based on the Belgian hidden-camera comedy format that Red Arrow sold to NBC.Earlier this year Red Arrow’s distrib arm, SevenOne Intl., sold Dick de Rijk’s gameshow “You Deserve It” to ABC with Kinetic also producing.