People/Biz

From Big Four to Big Three: CAA closes acquisition of ICM Partners

Close to a year after the deal was first announced, leading talent agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has closed its acquisition of former rival ICM Partners. The acquisition, which went through ...
June 28, 2022

Close to a year after the deal was first announced, leading talent agency Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has closed its acquisition of former rival ICM Partners.

The acquisition, which went through a rigorous review process by the U.S. Department of Justice, will reconfigure the Hollywood agency landscape, with three major competitors¬†— CAA, WME and UTA¬†— now vying for prestige clients amid the myriad smaller agencies also in the mix. According to CAA, the merged company will boast more than 3,200 employees operating in 25 countries around the world.

At the time of the initial announcement, CAA said the move would lead to broader and more inclusive representation, with a global roster of artists in film, TV, music, comedy, theatre, games, politics and podcasting. ICM’s books division also complements CAA’s existing businesses, and the London-based ICM Stellar Sports serves more than 800 clients around the world while maintaining offices in 10 countries.

According to various trade reports, 425 employees of ICM Partners will make the move to CAA, with 105 members of the ICM team expected to be laid off.

“Today marks a new chapter in the history of our company, positioning us better than ever to deliver extraordinary opportunities for many of the world’s pre-eminent artists, athletes, thought leaders, brands, and organizations in entertainment, sports, and culture,” said CAA co-chairmen Kevin Huvane, Bryan Lourd and Richard Lovett in a joint statement.

“We are thrilled to welcome our new ICM colleagues to CAA, and look forward to combining their expertise, relationships, and resources with those of our agents and executives around the world. Our diverse range of clients who entertain and inspire large global audiences have never been in more demand, nor have their opportunities been greater. With today’s addition of our new colleagues, the scope of possibilities for helping clients achieve their goals is limitless.”

Chris Silbermann and Ted Chervin, ICM Partners’ CEO and managing director, respectively, also offered their own joint statement: “Combining with the best-in-class agency to build an even greater representation company for our clients and our colleagues is the core strategic reason for this move. We couldn’t be more enthusiastic about our future together, and are energized by the sophisticated, forward-thinking representation we offer clients. This is the ideal next step for our companies.”

Among the talent on CAA’s unscripted and non-fiction roster are RJ Cutler, Lightbox and Nutopia. Unscripted prodcos within ICM Partners’ roster include Thinkfactory Media, Jupiter Entertainment and Glass Entertainment Group.

Allen & Company LLC served as financial advisor for CAA, and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz as legal advisor. Lazard served as financial advisor for ICM, with Sheppard Mullin and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP as legal advisors.

About The Author
Andrew Jeffrey joined Realscreen in 2021 as its news editor. Here, he helps to oversee assignment, reporting and editing for Realscreen's daily newsletter. Prior to his work covering documentary and non-fiction film and TV, he worked as a reporter and associate producer for CBC Edmonton, and as a reporter for The Star Calgary, where he covered daily news on beats such as local and provincial politics, health care and harm reduction, sports and education. His work has appeared in other Canadian news outlets such as TVO, the Edmonton Journal and Avenue Magazine.

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