After focusing on the global market for the past year, ITV Studios is once again bolstering its presence in the UK production market.

ITV is reportedly close to announcing the acquisition of Twofour Group, the maker of The Jump and Educating Yorkshire.

ITV Studios has also raided leading comedy and entertainment producer Objective Productions, hiring a number of senior execs to launch entertainment outfit Cats on the Roof Media.

The deals would significantly boost ITV presence in factual, entertainment and comedy in the UK.

The Guardian reported that the Twofour deal could be announced this week. An ITV spokesperson declined to comment.

The Twofour Group turned over £87.5m according to Televisual’s 2014 Production 100 survey and comprises factual, entertainment, drama and comedy indies Twofour, Boom Wales, OSF, Indus, Mainstreet and Delightful Industries.

Meanwhile, ITV is setting up new indie Cats on the Roof with Objective co-founder Andrew O’Connor, plus Objective Productions managing director Paul Sandler, head of entertainment Matt Crook and creative director Adam Adler.
Cats on the Roof Media will act as an umbrella group within ITV Studios, overseeing a number of labels.

Gameface Productions will focus on gameshows and will be headed up by Adler as managing director.

Second Act Productions will produce scripted comedy to be run by a yet to be appointed executive.

Cats on the Roof Media will also oversee Crook Productions, an existing label run by Matt Crook. Its credits include Watch’s The Incredible Mr Goodwin.

The hope for ITV Studios is that Twofour and Cats on the Roof will create hits that ITV Studios Global Entertainment can exploit on the international market.
The deals also continue broadcaster ITV’s pivot towards production as part of its ongoing bid to diversify.

ITV’s UK production labels now include The Garden, Big Talk, So TV, 12 Yard, Potato and Possessed. Earlier this month, ITV took full control of Poldark producer Mammoth Screen, increasing its stake from 25% to 100%. 

ITV’s US acquisitions include Gurney, High Noon, Thinkfactory, DiGa and Leftfield. In March it acquired The Voice producer Talpa.

The swathe of deals mean that ITV is now a significant player in the global TV production market.

Tim Dams

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