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Endemol Shine, Paramount Among Suitors for Anonymous Content Stake

Endemol Shine North America and Paramount Pictures are among the suitors to buy a stake in Anonymous Content, the red-hot management-production entity behind “Spotlight,” “The Revenant,” “Mr. Robot” and other hits.

Anonymous hired Guggenheim Partners last fall to help it field offers for a minority interest in the Culver City-based company. The process has moved into the second phase with a handful of contenders now doing due diligence and a deeper dive into the company’s books. Anonymous is said to be seeking a high multiple for an investment, given the strength of its growing TV and film business.

A rep for Anonymous Content declined to comment, as did a rep for Endemol Shine. Endemol Shine, the joint venture of 21st Century Fox and Apollo Global Management, is pursuing the deal to help expand its U.S. scripted production operations. Paramount is already in business with Anonymous Content through a first-look deal with Paramount Television. Others in the mix are said to include eOne, which has been beefing up its roster of talent through pacts with Steven Spielberg’s Amblin and producer Mark Gordon.

Anonymous is believed to be offering a minority interest that would be just under 50% of the company, with principals Steve Golin, Michael Sugar and others remaining at the helm.

Anonymous is coming off a strong run during the 2016 film awards derby with “Spotlight” and “The Revenant” soaking up Oscars and many other kudos. “Mr. Robot” last summer became a buzzy sleeper success for USA Network that has helped define the new direction of the cabler’s originals.

The biggest driver of production activity at Anonymous is television. The company has more than a dozen series orders and pilots in pipeline for the coming year. Anonymous has focused on shopping high-end talent packages that command big commitments upfront from networks, often sidestepping the pilot process. HBO’s “True Detective” and Cinemax’s “The Knick” were assembled under this model.

Anonymous also has a prosperous talent management division and a commercial production division.

Anonymous’ upcoming series orders include Netflix’s “The OA” and “13 Reasons Why,” Amazon’s “Good Girls Revolt,” TNT’s “The Alienist,” Epix’s “Berlin Station” and Starz’s “Counterpart.”

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