Distributor DRG Rebrands as NENT Studios U.Ok. as NENT Group Restarts Unscripted Sale

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London-based distribution enterprise DRG, owned by Nordic Leisure Group (NENT Group), has rebranded as NENT Studios U.Ok. as a part of a wider reorganization of the enterprise to give attention to premium drama.

and rSelection understands a rebranding of the distributor has been within the playing cards for a while because it turns into extra built-in underneath NENT Group.

NENT Studios U.Ok., which covers each scripted and non-scripted growth, manufacturing and distribution, will spend money on the U.Ok. and globally to channel content material into NENT Group-backed streaming service Viaplay. On the distribution aspect, the enterprise will proceed to work out of DRG’s central London workplaces, and sustain relationships with its roster of producers.

Underneath the brand new association, DRG CEO Richard Halliwell — who additionally served as managing director of NENT Studios U.Ok. — has been named CEO of the U.Ok. enterprise. He takes over from Jakob Mejlhede Andersen, who left in February and not too long ago joined Center Japanese streamer Shahid.

Shaped in 2007 as a standard distribution enterprise, DRG developed to sort out program origination and growth in addition to financing, expertise and manufacturing. Its catalogue covers greater than 13,000 hours of programming and 150 codecs. Certainly one of its most distinguished titles is ITV drama “Doc Martin,” which has bought into greater than 100 territories with seven worldwide remakes.

Extra broadly, NENT Studios — which includes 32 content material creation, manufacturing and distribution firms in 17 international locations — is being reorganized to give attention to scripted drama manufacturing throughout each TV and movie, in addition to distribution. The drive informs NENT Group’s give attention to Viaplay, which is to launch round 30 originals this yr and is concentrating on an annual 40-title slate from 2021.

NENT Group has revealed discussions are ongoing with varied companions to spend money on its scripted drama pipeline, which it says includes 45% of NENT Studios gross sales.

The brand new scripted manufacturing enterprise will comprise NENT Studios’ Nordic manufacturing firms Mind Academy Nordics, Good Drama and EPIQ; its Budapest-based CEE manufacturing firm Paprika; NENT Studios’ U.Ok. operations, together with London-based DRG and NENT Group’s three way partnership with FilmNation Leisure; its U.S. primarily based scripted manufacturing firm Mind Academy U.S.; and NENT Group’s funding in Los Angeles-based studio Picturestart. The group can be centered on creating a complete slate of latest codecs and promoting present ones internationally.

The enterprise has additionally restarted the sale of non-scripted, branded leisure and occasions enterprise, which was beforehand suspended as a result of COVID-19 pandemic. NENT has mentioned it has acquired “encouraging ranges of curiosity.”

Anders Jensen, president and CEO of NENT Group President, mentioned: “The excessive subscriber consumption and viewing ranges we’ve seen at Viaplay, and the clear demand for top of the range scripted drama from each Viaplay and different media firms around the globe, have emphasised the significance of the reorganization of NENT Studios.

“Viaplay and others need to make investments extra in scripted drama, so that is the place we’re focusing our sources. The worldwide growth of Viaplay will solely improve this demand additional. We’re holding discussions with potential companions concerning investing in our scripted operations in order that we will improve our output additional. And we’ve now recommenced the method to promote the opposite components of NENT Studios — these are engaging and profitable companies, for which we’ve already acquired encouraging ranges of curiosity, however have very restricted synergy with our streaming technique and ambitions. Our focus is on Viaplay and the chance to supply extra authentic reveals which are fashionable with viewers within the Nordics and around the globe,” continued Jensen.

Commenting on the rebranding of DRG, Halliwell mentioned: “NENT Group has a long-term dedication to the U.Ok., which is a really world content material centre. Bringing DRG totally into NENT Studios U.Ok. will create incredible new alternatives, each for the crew and for our present and future companions. I’m delighted to be on the helm of this formidable new native studio, which has the strategic imaginative and prescient, sources, expertise and inventive verve to ship a raft of stand-out scripted and unscripted content material to the worldwide market. We’ve quite a few thrilling tasks in superior growth and anticipate with the ability to announce our first scripted fee within the subsequent few weeks.”

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