Farah Ramzan Golant (pictured) is to step down as CEO of All3Media, as Discovery Communications and Liberty Global have today (September 23) finalized their US$930 million takeover of the super-indie.
A global search for a new CEO will begin immediately, the two owners said, with Jane Turton – currently All3′s COO – being promoted to MD and charged with overseeing the transition period. Neil Bright will continue in his role as All3′s CFO.
“Having successfully completed the sale of All3Media… I have determined that this is the right time to leave the company to pursue a new challenge,” said Golant in a statement.
“In my tenure at All3Media, it has been a pleasure to work with the talented people across the group who are making ground-breaking content that finds strong audiences around the world. I know that All3Media is poised for a new period of great creative achievement, and I wish them every success.”
In addition to Golant’s departure, All3Media co-founders Steve Morrison, Jules Burns and David Liddiment are retiring from the company’s board of directors. Morrison will remain as a special advisor to the joint venture’s board of directors, which will have equal representation from Discovery and Liberty.
The moves come after the two firms announced in May their plans to acquire All3, which houses 15 prodcos, responsible for unscripted and factual entertainment hits such as the Studio Lambert-produced Gogglebox and the Lime Pictures-produced The Only Way Is Essex.
Liberty Global CEO Mike Fries said: “We are excited to be closing the acquisition of All3Media. The business, which produces content for some of our biggest markets in Europe, including the UK, Germany and the Netherlands, is a natural fit for us and our strategy for content.”
David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery Communications, added that All3 is “a production powerhouse, with a unique ability to attract, foster and retain some of the best creative minds in the business.
“For nearly 30 years, Discovery has invested in high quality content and today’s deal furthers that commitment,” he said.
J.P. Morgan acted as financial adviser to Discovery Communications and Liberty Global, while Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP served as lead transaction counsel and Ashursts acted as lead regulatory counsel.
In addition, DLA Piper LLP served as legal adviser to Discovery Communications, while Centerview Partners acted as financial adviser to All3 and Clifford Chance served as legal adviser. Shearman & Sterling served as legal adviser to the management team of All3Media.