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Boom Pictures acquires Twofour Group

Boom Pictures acquires Twofour Group
Tim Dams
16 October 2013

Boom Pictures has taken over Twofour Group.

The deal sees Twofour Group’s business – Twofour Broadcast, Twofour Rights and Twofour Digital – joining Boom Pictures, with its senior executives taking key roles in the enlarged Boom Pictures group.

The merger creates the UK’s biggest independent production group in the nations and regions, and puts the new Boom Pictures group among the top 10 UK indie production outfits by revenue. Boom turned over £28.4m in the year to 31 May 2013, while Twofour had revenues of £47.3m. Boom is based in Cardiff, and Twofour in Plymouth.

The merger has been backed by UK private equity firm LDC, which invested in the creation of Boom Pictures in 2012 by co-founders Lorraine Heggessey and Huw Eurig Davies when they launched the group in July last year.

Twofour Broadcast has produced over 200 hours of TV over the past year, including Splash!, The Hotel Inspector and Educating Yorkshire.

The inclusion of Twofour Digital with clients like DuPont / Ogilvy Entertainment, and the Horizons series on BBC Global News complements Boom Pictures’ digital and branded content expertise through the Boomerang label, which produces GT Academy for Nissan and Playstation and The Clare Balding Show for BT Sport.

The group will also have a significant post production presence. Twofour has a large post-production set up in Plymouth while Boom Pictures’ owns Cardiff-based Gorilla and The Joint in Soho.

Twofour Rights, which launched in 2012, becomes the group’s in-house distribution arm, Twofour Broadcast’s Los Angeles office will act as the group’s US base.

The Twofour labels will retain their names and branding, with the senior management continuing in their current roles or taking on Boom Pictures Group roles.

Charles Wace will step back from his role as CEO of Twofour Group to pursue other interests, but will remain involved as a Non-Executive Chairman of Twofour and a Non-Executive Director of Boom Pictures.

Melanie Leach will continue in her role as MD of Twofour Broadcast, and will become an Executive Director of Boom Pictures with a seat on the board.

Mark Hawkins will continue in his role as MD of Twofour Digital and Rocket Science will become an Executive Director of Boom Pictures with a seat on the board.

Andy Mackenzie continues as Creative Director, Twofour Broadcast.

Anthony Hughes, currently Commercial Director of Twofour, will become Commercial Director of Boom Pictures, working across the group, and will continue to head up Twofour Rights.

Tim Jackman, previously Legal and Business Affairs Director at Twofour Group, will now take up a group-wide role as Legal and Business Affairs Director, Boom Pictures.

Lorraine Heggessey, Executive Chair and co-founder of Boom Pictures, said: “We’re on an exciting journey and it’s the right time for us to join up with such an excellent creative and executive team who have already built a hugely successful company. Boom and Twofour fit together perfectly and have a similar positive culture, firmly rooted in the Nations and Regions. We have got off to a flying start in our first year, building Boom’s programming, and attracting major comedy and drama talent. This deal will cement our position as a new leading player in the indie sector.”

Charles Wace, founder and CEO of Twofour Group, said: “Lorraine and Huw are building a fast-growing dynamic media group in Boom Pictures, that is set to become a leading force in the UK and internationally. In looking at the future of Twofour’s business, the attraction was the backing of LDC, one of the UK’s leading and most experienced private equity firms, combined with Lorraine’s leadership and vision. This ambitious partnership is the ideal platform to help take Twofour to the next stage in its life.”

Huw Eurig Davies, Deputy Chair and co-founder of Boom Pictures adds that: “The strategic value of this deal, at this stage in our development, is that it fulfils several key business growth ambitions. It gives us real scale, a base from which to grow in the US and brings distribution in-house so we can benefit from the rights that come from our creativity. Importantly for us as a Welsh group, the synergy with Twofour as a company that has also grown its roots in the regions means that we have expanded our footprint, making the Boom Pictures group a key supplier outside of London.”

Daniel Sasaki, Managing Director of LDC London, commented: “We are very happy to provide the further capital needed to complete this transaction, which is transformative for Boom Pictures and means the enhanced group is now one of the UK’s top ten independent production houses. The UK TV production area is one of the most exciting in the Media Sector, with excellent growth prospects as the impact of digital, social and mobile media is significantly expanding traditional TV programming and video content distribution models. The combination of Boom and Twofour Group’s extremely talented management teams means the new group has the outstanding leadership to deliver on its exciting growth strategy.”

Boom Pictures launched last year with private equity firm LDC and former BBC1 controller Lorraine Heggessey backing the management buy out of Boomerang. Its strategy was to support the organic growth of the companies within the group, to attract leading creative talent, to back start-ups, and to acquire companies that extend the group’s portfolio and capabilities.

The first deal was with Graham Linehan and producer Richard Boden for comedy label Delightful Industries, and this was followed in January 2013 by the backing of former ITV drama heads Laura Mackie and Sally Haynes’ new company Mainstreet Pictures. Boom Pictures companies also include Boom Pictures Cymru, which produces over 400 hours of Welsh language programming for S4C, Boomerang, Oxford Scientific Films and Indus Films.

All comments
Brian Williams
Brian Williams  | November 19, 2013
Congratulations on your growth! If ever you are in need of subject matter with regard to the Real Welsh Ancient History, i.e. King Arthur and all the other battles...keep my details near by.

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