Tinopolis buys Passion Distribution

U.K. company adds to global footprint


Blighty’s Tinopolis has added another company to its stable as it continues to grow its global footprint.

Tinopolis, whose U.S. assets include A Smith & Co, maker of “Hell’s Kitchen” presented by Gordon Ramsay, is to acquire London-based Passion Distribution.

The deal is understood to be worth around £15 million ($24 million). Passion CEO Sally Miles will continue to run the company.

Tinopolis executive chairman Ron Jones said, “Tinopolis’ strategy is to develop and grow as a group that is successful creatively and financially with a strong international reach.

“With over 40% of our business now outside the U.K., we needed a distribution business that could match this and in Sally and her team we have found our ideal partners.”

Tinopolis, based in Cardiff, the capital of Wales, also owns Base Prods., which operates from Los Angeles.

Passion is a sales agent for several North American and U.K. producers including Scripps Networks, The Oprah Winfrey Network, World of Wonder and Sundance Channel.

It has built a catalog of more than 3,000 hours of shows in the past four years, and is also active in pre-selling, finding co-production partners and deficit funding.

Miles said the deal expands Passion’s global digital business.

“We are very excited to be joining a dynamic and fast-growing group that will provide us with additional investment, financing for our third-party relationships and the opportunity to work with a very talented and respected team of people,” Miles said.

“The existing catalog sold under Mentorn Intl. will introduce Passion to new genres including drama and comedy. We also plan to invest further and expand our global digital business, increasing revenue opportunities on behalf of our content suppliers.”

Jones indicated that other deals were in the pipeline.