Germany’s ProSiebenSat.1, the second largest broadcast group in Europe after RTL, has purchased a 51% controlling stake in Chris Coelen’s Santa Monica-based prodco Kinetic Content through its Red Arrow Entertainment Group.
Red Arrow, launched in January and home to companies such as Producers at Work, Magic Flight Film, Redseven Entertainment, format shop Sultan Sushi Belgium and Sultan Sushi Netherlands, also has partnerships with Dick de Rijk (Deal or no Deal), Phil Gurin (Singing Bee) and Omri Marcus. Kinetic Content’s output will be sold globally by Red Arrow’s program distribution arm, SevenOne International.
In a statement, Red Arrow said the deal signifies a major step in the company’s ‘ongoing expansion of its international footprint and content catalog,’ calling Coelen an ‘experienced and highly successful creative talent.’ While terms of the deal have not been revealed, it will provide Coelen with capital to further expand the company.
‘We believe Chris is an exceptional production and creative executive,’ said Jan Frouman, group managing director of Red Arrow. ‘In a mere six months, he has assembled a stellar team, executed key development agreements, and has positioned Kinetic for rapid growth. Our partnership is well timed and represents an excellent opportunity to accelerate Red Arrow’s international expansion as a whole.’
Coelen told realscreen that the deal had been in discussions for ‘about a month or two, but once we decided to do it, it came together pretty fast.
‘If I was going to make any deal like this, it was going to be primarily for strategic and creative reasons,’ he said, regarding the decision to partner with Red Arrow. ‘They’re hugely focused in trying to bring together an amazing group of content creators.’
Coelen said the company’s relationship with ‘one of the premier broadcast groups in the world,’ coupled with its distribution capability also made the opportunity extremely attractive.
‘If you look at the content they touch already, it’s multi-genre and multi-platform, and dead on with what we want to do,’ he added.
During his four years at RDF USA, Coelen oversaw such hits as Secret Millionaire, Don’t Forget the Lyrics and Wife Swap. Before that, he was a partner at United Talent Agency. Since founding Kinetic, he’s bolstered its staff with former RDF colleagues Jennifer Danska, Katie Griffin, Gerald Massimei and Karrie Wolfe as well as with former BBC producer Matilda Zoltowski, ABC News alumni Heather Downie and Arash Ghadishah, new SVP Billy Taylor and COO Kathleen Burns Rohr, ex-Pilgrim Films & Television.