Entertainment One has made its first acquisition of a U.K.-based television production company, it announced Monday. The independent studio has acquired a majority stake in British non-scripted specialist Whizz Kid Entertainment.
Founded by CEO Malcolm Gerrie and managing director Lisa Chapman in 2006, Whizz Kid has already collaborated with Entertainment One (eOne) on the U.S. adaptation of its format “Ex on the Beach” (pictured) for MTV, which eOne is producing. The U.K. company is also a leading live-event specialist, including producing the British Academy Film Awards for BAFTA and the BBC.
Gurrie and Chapman will continue to lead the team at Whizz Kid, reporting to eOne’s executive vice president, alternative, television, Tara Long. Long said the acquisition would give eOne “a strong footing in one of the most creative markets in the world and is a great first step in our ambitious non-scripted global expansion strategy.”
The deal expands eOne’s growth and investment in non-scripted production into new territories. It will see further U.S. adaptations of Whizz Kid formats as well as bringing eOne’s extensive U.S. non-scripted slate to the U.K.
“The team at Whizz Kid always set the bar high creatively,” said Chapman. “Having already collaborated on ‘Ex on the Beach’ with eOne in the US, we are now looking forward to creating even more ambitious and daring global entertainment formats.”