US-based media investment firm Narrative Capital has acquired Sony Pictures Television’s portfolio of leading TV channels and their UK digital assets for an undisclosed sum.
The portfolio – Sony Movies, Sony Movies Action, Sony Movies Classic, Sony Channel, POP, Tiny POP and POP Max – is the largest FTA network of children’s film and commercial channels in the UK. Together, they deliver over 6,400 hours of content on Freeview, Sky, Virgin Media and Freesat.
Commenting on the deal, Daniel Levin, CEO of Narrative, said, “Narrative’s range of activities throughout the content lifecycle makes it a great match. Sony Pictures Television’s UK FTA broadcast business has long stood out as a hub for designer, brand and technology interactions, which is what we are looking for. What an exciting opportunity to change your name with a dynamic, confident voice that welcomes new viewers to celebrate the ease, spontaneity and connection of television. We are delighted to welcome these channels and the staff into the Narrative family ”.
The deal was conducted on the ground in the UK by Remy Minute. Minute was the founder and CEO of CSC Media Group (CSC) in 2006, which it became the largest portfolio of FTA TV channels in the UK. Minute will step in as CEO to help with the transition from the company outside of Sony and set it up for independent success.
Minute said, “These premium Sony Pictures Television channels, together with the agile group of media experts who run them, provide this rare platform opportunity from which to grow both into existing businesses and into the world. new digital extensions. I am delighted to be partnering with Narrative and look forward to working in the UK and US to fully seize the opportunity ”.
Levin added, “Remy is a visionary. We couldn’t be more proud to be associated with him ”.
Narrative will evolve branding and merchandising partnerships around children’s offerings and explore opportunities for the film and entertainment portfolio, while leveraging existing digital assets across the portfolio to increase reach and capture audiences on a variety of devices. There has been an increased digital presence with the rollout of POP Player AVOD TV and the mobile app, web destinations and YouTube channels.
Levin continued, “Sony Pictures Television has done a tremendous job cultivating the channels and the acquisition is a welcome extension of our audience-centric, connection-centric philosophy. We are seizing the opportunity to expand the reach of the iconic POP brand with new platforms and original content ”.