Production firm behind Question Time and Crufts ‘up for sale for £300m’

Thu, 16 Mar 2017

A Wales-based international media firm that counts Question Time, Crufts and Robot Wars among its projects is up for sale with a price tag of around £300 million, reports suggest.

The Guardian said Tinopolis, thought to be the last remaining independent TV producer in the UK, has notified a number of private equity houses and media owners that it is exploring the future of its business, including a possible sale. ITV could be in the running.

Tinopolis is a media producer and distributor, primarily supplying content to major UK broadcasters and producing TV shows for top US networks. Other shows in its stable include Hell’s Kitchen and Traffic Cops and it also produces BT Sport’s football and rugby coverage, a deal thought to be the biggest live broadcasting contract in British TV.

On the proviso that a typical sale price equates to 10 times annual earnings the company, thought to make upwards of £25 million a year, could be valued at as much as £300 million. The Guardian reported that first-round bids are to be lodged “imminently”.

Over the past few years Tinopolis has had discussions over a sale of the company, holding talks with venture capital firm MSD Capital and media company Entertainment One, owner of Peppa Pig and maker and distributor of the Hunger Games and Oscar best picture Spotlight, back in 2014.

ITV, which considered acquiring Tinopolis in 2014 but did not enter talks, could also be a potential suitor. Adam Crozier, the company’s chief executive, is on an acquisition spree as he seeks to buy healthy production firms rather than rely on volatile advertising revenue.

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