Media Fund APX Group Takes 50% Stake in U.K.’s Twickenham Studios
U.S.-Europe media fund APX Group has acquired a 50% stake in London’s Twickenham Film Studios.
The move comes weeks after Twickenham Studios chair Sunny Vohra acquired a 6.95% stake in the APX Group for more than $70 million, reflecting a market cap of $1.1 billion for APX, which is planning a public listing on New York Stock Exchange later this year.
APX and Twickenham did not disclose the financial value of the deal.
As part of the acquisition, APX Group will rebrand its global network of studios with the Twickenham Studios name. The parties have also agreed on an accelerated expansion plan to acquire additional studios and land suited for studio construction in Europe and the U.S., all under the Twickenham Studios brand.
The equity structure of the transaction is made together with APX Group’s and U.K. partner and production arm Herd International Productions and the partners Shelley Hammond, who is also global CEO of APX Group, Hollie Richmond, Ben Dillon, and Iggy Ellis. Both APX Group and Herd International have moved their head office to Twickenham Film Studios.
Twickenham Films Studios’ board shall include two members nominated by APX Group. The current management and staff structure of the studio shall not be affected by the acquisition. The companies said that they have agreed to “provide a generous bonus and incentive package for the entire personnel of Twickenham Film Studios on an ongoing basis.”
APX Group recently acquired a significant stake in Next Wave Studios, the joint venture between Leo Matchett and Roman Coppola’s Decentralized Pictures and Stephen Murray’s Bingeable, and the development slate of Burning Wheel.
New York’s Loeb & Loeb LLP, headed by vice chair Mitchell S. Nussbaum advised APX Group on the Twickenham deal.
Hammond said: “As CEO I’ve made it the goal of our group to expand our production network into fresh territories and to complete a successful public merger. Twickenham Film Studios is a cultural institution of film production and as such will be a jewel within our production portfolio. The work completed over the 100 plus years while the studio has been active is seminal. As partners, APX Group intends to secure the next hundred years and actively expand the brand to enable continuing award-winning service to the creative industry. In short – the Twickenham brand is historic, its reputation iconic, and our vision is global.”
Adi Cohen, chair of the APX Group board, added: “Twickenham is an iconic and historical brand, the home of British celluloid history, the home of The Beatles and many, many more – all representing unmatched quality, prestige, heritage and the preservation of history and culture. We are honored to be part of history with this acquisition.”
Vohra said: “Twickenham Studios was saved from liquidators and demolition by myself and a group of like-minded film-buffs approximately 10 years ago. Now we all look forward towards worldwide expansion and growth between our current management and the APX Group team. The Twickenham brand lasted gloriously for the past 100 years, and we are committed to the next 100 years.”
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