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Warner Bros completes Shed Media deal

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Warner Bros has completed its acquisition of a majority stake in Shed Media, the British independent production firm behind shows such as Waterloo Road and Supernanny.

Under the deal, Shed Media will remain an independent company, but its global distribution arm, Outright Distribution, will be folded into the Warner Bros UK operation.

In August, the Time Warner-owned Warner Bros Television Group secured a 55.75% stake in Shed Media, which owns the Shed Productions, Ricochet, TwentyTwenty and Wall To Wall businesses.

The Shed management team held on to a 21.37% shareholding, with the remaining stake being split between a group of 27 key staff members.

Jeffrey Schlesinger, president of Warner Bros International Television, said that the Shed deal is an important part of the firm's strategic growth strategy around the world.

"The acquisition of a majority stake in one of the top multi-genre production companies in the UK will establish a foundation for future expansion into other countries," he said.

"Incorporating the shows, formats and talented executives of Outright into our international distribution operation will expand the depth and breadth of the programming that we are able to offer our broadcasting partners around the world."

Shed Media chief executive Nick Southgate added: "This tremendously exciting deal represents a watershed moment for Shed. It opens up a myriad of opportunities for our business, not least of which is access to Warner Bros' unparalleled worldwide distribution network. Shed and Warner Bros. both believe in the creative process and quality of execution.

"With our UK production and international format licensing expertise, and Warner Bros' extraordinary global distribution capabilities, we are creating a powerful combination that we hope will be a great benefit to the UK television sector and to our international broadcast partners worldwide."

Last month, Shed Media reported a 22% year-on-year growth in its adjusted pre-tax profit to £6.2m in the first half of 2010, with revenue up 27% year-on-year to £59m.

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