People/Biz

ITV takes majority stake in DiGa Vision

UK broadcaster ITV has acquired a majority stake in DiGa Vision, the reality and scripted prodco from Tony DiSanto (pictured, left) and Liz Gateley (right), which will become part of the ITV Studios U.S. Group.
February 19, 2014

ITV has acquired a majority stake in DiGa Vision, the reality and scripted prodco from Tony DiSanto (pictured, left) and Liz Gateley (right), which will become part of the ITV Studios U.S. Group.

The New York-based prodco was taken over for an undisclosed sum, and sit alongside the UK broadcaster’s other indie acquisitions: Gurney Productions, High Noon Entertainment and Thinkfactory Media, as well as UK production companies The Garden and Big Talk.

In a regulatory filing, ITV said that it will make an upfront cash payment for a 51% stake, with a put and call option to buy the remainder of the company. The put and call option can be exercised at some point between three and six years after today’s deal, with the total amount paid linked to the performance of the company over that period.

While the sale price hasn’t been revealed, ITV said the multiple paid “is similar to the range paid on ITV’s previous acquisitions.” The broadcaster paid US$40 million for control of Gurney and $25.7 million for 60% of High Noon.

DiSanto and Gateley launched DiGa Vision in 2011 after leaving MTV, where they developed docuseries including Jersey Shore, Laguna Beach and The Hills. 

Under their production banner, they have produced Ke$ha: Crazy Beautiful Life, Teen Wolf, Girl Get Your Mind Right and the upcoming Celebrity Home Raiders for Lifetime.

“Tony and Liz have an excellent track record in generating original, engaging and compelling reality and scripted programming with an impressive content pipeline which feeds into numerous networks,” said Paul Buccieri, managing director of ITV Studios International and president and CEO of ITV Studios U.S. Group.

“They have developed a brilliant understanding of pop culture and really know what appeals to the key teenage and young adult demographic – which is supported by their online, mobile and social media strategy – together with a successful brand extension and merchandising arm,” he added.

DiSanto and Gateley, in a joint statement, added: “Paul Buccieri and his team share our sensibility and enthusiasm for breaking new creative ground and we look forward to this next step in DiGa’s evolution.”

With additional files by Adam Benzine.

About The Author
Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.

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