Transatlantic producer and distributor AMG is looking to replicate its deal with Shami Media Group (SMG) as it seeks to expand rapidly over the next five years.
AMG in January of 2014 aligned itself with mini-studio SMG in New York City as a source for outstanding visual content from feature length films to television programs across multiple platforms. The two firms are now launching a joint-venture independent studio to produce and distribute feature films and content for network, cable and digital platforms, with AMG distributing the resulting IP through its international network.Mark Berry, president of AMG Visuals says that such deals are a key focus, adding that such an "alignment of interests is going to lend itself to structures like this.""What we talk to people about is relationships, like the one with Bob Shami at SMG, which is a long-term deal. He hasn't sold his company and is gone - he's part of a deal that sees him really building his studio and staying with AMG, and we'll both gain from that success. We like that formula, it's a lot more sustainable."Berry added that AMG, which has taken a controlling stake in kids' brand Princess Pirate last month, was also wary of the inflated prices being asked for some prodcos - a common theme from senior execs at this years Cannes."We're a growth company and there are good opportunities, but we're not after growth for the sake of it," says Berry. "There are a lot of companies out there who think that this golden age allows them to show a business plan that has a hockey stick [growth curve] in it. And they're valuing themselves based on that."AMG set out its five-year plan to double in size last year and has acquired animation rights to Princess Pirate, major star films along with 1000 hours of quality television programming content over the past 12 months for international distribution.
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