Endemol Shine Sells ‘Dark’ & ‘4 Blocks’ Producer Wiedemann & Berg Television To KKR-Backed Leonine


Endemol Shine has sold Wiedemann and Berg Television, the drama producer behind hit Netflix series Dark, to Leonine, the German media conglomerate backed by New York investment outfit KKR.

This comes after Leonine, which was formed through the merger of Tele München Group, Universum Film, i&u TV, acquired Wiedemann and Berg’s film unit.

W&B Television was set up as a joint venture with Endemol Shine in 2010, marking the biggest union of independent entertainment companies around the world. It is one of Germany’s top drama producers with series including Netflix’s first German original Dark, Sky’s Pagan Peak and TNT Serie’s 4 Blocks. It is also in production with Netflix on Tribes of Europa.

Max Wiedemann and Quirin Berg remain in their current roles as Managing Directors, W&B TV in the Munich-based office of the company, within the Leonine media group.

Wiedemann and Berg said, “Our joint venture has been a very successful chapter for Endemol Shine, as well as us. We want to thank Magnus Kastner, Ute März, Boudewijn Beusmans, Sophie Turner-Laing and all colleagues at Endemol Shine for the excellent partnership. With great appreciation and respect, we look at the common achievements, for which our thanks go to Nanni Erben, our amazing team and our many companions in particular. We all have exciting years ahead of us and we are looking forward to working with KKR and Fred Kogel and to our shared vision for Leonine.”

The transaction is expected to close in early 2020, subject to regulatory approvals and compliance with customary closing conditions.

Separately, Endemol Shine Germany is launching a new Berlin-based scripted company under the leadership of Nanni Erben, who was the company’s third Managing Director after joining in 2017.

In her time at W&B TV, Erben has produced series including including Tatort: Meta. Erben and her Berlin team will continue to produce for the domestic and international market, working closely with Endemol Shine Group’s network of drama production companies.

Magnus Kastner, CEO of Endemol Shine Germany, said, “With the amazing Nanni Erben on board, the outstanding experience and expertise of her team, and our international production colleagues to collaborate with, we are well placed to build on the success story from Berlin and I personally am happily looking forward to an exciting cooperation with Nanni. We want to warmly thank Max and Quirin for the years spent together and wish them all the best for the future.”

Erben added, “I would like to thank Quirin and Max and the entire Wiedemann & Berg team for the exciting and inspiring time and for the great collaboration. I am now looking forward to the new challenges that I will be facing as managing director of the newly founded Berlin company. I would particularly like to thank Magnus Kastner and Endemol Shine for the trust in me. Together with my fantastic team, we will continue to stand for a successful and extraordinary program.”

This article was printed from https://deadline.com/2019/11/endemol-shine-sells-dark-4-blocks-producer-wiedemann-berg-television-to-kkr-backed-leonine-1202786941/