Canadian producer-distributor Entertainment One (eOne) could be set to change hands, with the firm confirming it has appointed JP Morgan and Credit Suisse to conduct a review after receiving approaches “from various parties.”
UK reports suggest that eOne – which notably owns half of the children’s property Peppa Pig, distributes the hit Twilight movies and sells TV shows including Will & Grace – could seek a price tag of as much as £400 million (US$631.5 million).
eOne’s recent factual titles include six-part Second World War doc series The Last War Heroes , a coproduction with UK indie Impossible Pictures; and truTV series Chill, a coproduction with Left/Right.
In an announcement on the London Stock Exchange, the company said: “The board of Entertainment One notes the recent press speculation and confirms that it is considering its strategic options, which may include a sale of the company in response to interest it has received from various parties.”
The firm added that JP Morgan and Credit Suisse had been engaged to co-ordinate a review of the company for the board. “There can be no certainty that an offer will be forthcoming for the company,” it said. “A further announcement will be made in due course.”
Shares in the firm rose more than 13% on the news, trading at 185 pence earlier this morning. eOne, which is is 39.3% owned by Marwyn Value Investors, listed on London’s Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in 2007 before moving to the main London Stock Exchange (LSE) last year.
The announcement comes after eOne acquired Australian distribution group Hopscotch for an undisclosed sum in April this year.
Based in Sydney, Hopscotch has been distributing to the Australian and New Zealand markets since 2002, with documentaries such as Bowling for Columbine, Oceans, Valentino: The Last Emperor, Solo, Spellbound and Earth From Above in its catalog.