Peppa Pig is now owned by Hasbro, as Entertainment One is snapped up by the toy giant.
The latest acquisition deal to impact the world of movies has seemingly just come out of the blue, with the surprise announcement that toy giant Hasbro has snapped up Entertainment One in a deal worth around $4bn.
Hasbro gets its paws on the likes of Peppa Pig, PJ Masks and Clifford The Big Red Dog to add to its portfolio. In a statement from Hasbro boss Brian Goldner (via The Wrap), he said that “the acquisition of eOne adds beloved story-led global family brands that deliver strong operating returns to Hasbro’s portfolio and provides a pipeline of new brand creation driven by family-oriented storytelling, which will now include Hasbro’s IP”.
He added that “in addition, Hasbro will leverage eOne’s immersive entertainment capabilities to bring our portfolio of brands that have appeal to gamers, fans and families to all screens globally and realise full franchise economics across our blueprint strategy for shareholders. We are excited to welcome eOne’s talented employees from around the world into the Hasbro family”.
Translating all of that corporate-speak, that seems to suggest that Hasbro – which has film ambitions of its own – is keen to continue with Entertainment One’s movie output. What’s less clear is what happens to the material that’s not so family orientated. Last year, for instance, Entertainment One was the distributor in the UK who took a risk on something like The Children Act. Where does material like that sit in the Hasbro master plan?
Also, Entertainment One is one of the most active distributors of low- to mid-budget movies in the UK. There’s no immediate threat to that, and our hope is that Hasbro not only continues to back EOne’s busy film output, but invests further into it, and that investment supports non-franchise films.
We wait and see how this all pans out. Fingers crossed for the many Entertainment One employees that this turns out to be a good thing.