As Deadline exclusively revealed in April would happen, Lionsgate Entertainment has bulked up its asset base of content generating and client representation by completing a majority stake purchase for top management/production company 3 Arts Entertainment. We reported last month that the deal was in the works, and that Lionsgate is in talks to buy 50% of 3 Arts with an option to acquire the remaining 50% in five years. The numbers we heard pegged 3 Arts’ valuation at $300 million at the least, with some sources indicating it could be closer to $350 million.
The management/production company’s leadership would be staying put after the transaction. That includes 3 Arts partners Erwin Stoff, Michael Rotenberg, Howard Klein, David Miner, Dave Becky, Nick Frenkel and Molly Madden.
Lionsgate and 3 Arts had no comment at the time.
Lionsgate had indicated that it was on the market for acquisitions, and had been looking at several management/production companies over the past several months as a way of getting closer to talent.
Here is the official release today from Lionsgate:
Reflecting the evolving talent-friendly landscape of content production & distribution, global content leader Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF.A, LGF.B) and premier talent management and production company 3 Arts Entertainment have formed an unprecedented partnership under which Lionsgate has acquired a majority stake in 3 Arts, the two companies announced today. The transaction, which is effective immediately, creates a uniquely competitive platform combining a global distribution infrastructure, deep production expertise and prolific talent relationships. 3 Arts will continue to operate under the leadership of its partners with an operating board.
3 Arts is a leading global entertainment company and content provider with an A-list client roster of directors, producers, actors, writers and comedians under the leadership of partners Erwin Stoff, Howard Klein, Michael Rotenberg, Molly Madden, Dave Becky, David Miner, and Nick Frenkel. Its television production slate of award-winning hit series includes It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Man With A Plan, 30 Rock, King of the Hill, The Office, Parks and Recreation, Marlon, Brooklyn Nine Nine, The Mindy Project, Champions, Master of None, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Insecure, American Vandal, and Silicon Valley. 3 Arts has also produced hit films such as The Edge of Tomorrow, Unbroken, Constantine, Devil’s Advocate, I Am Legend, 13 Hours, Office Space and The Matrix.
“We’re excited to be partnering with a best-in-class talent management company that shares our entrepreneurial culture and vision for the future,” said Lionsgate Chief Executive Officer Jon Feltheimer. “This deal checks all the boxes – a strategic and accretive transaction for our shareholders and a win/win partnership for both companies. It enables us to deepen our already successful relationship with 3 Arts and allows them to offer a richer palette of opportunities to their clients.”
The 3 Arts management team added, “We’re thrilled to be partnering with one of the most dynamic and innovative entertainment companies in the business. Every day our clients are asking about the changing landscape, and this venture will create enormous opportunities to harness Lionsgate’s areas of expertise to give clients a competitive edge.”
The deal was negotiated for Lionsgate by Television Group COO Laura Kennedy. The studio was represented by Robert Haymer of Latham & Watkins LLP. 3 Arts was advised by investment bank Moelis & Company LLC, Alan Epstein at Venable LLP and Craig Jacobson at Hansen, Jacobson.