German TV Loonland Acquires Sony Wonder
German animation production house and rights buyer, TV Loonland AG has acquired the television production and distribution activities of Sony Wonder, the childrens production arm of Sony Music Entertainment. The deal was worth US$20.5 million in cash and stocks. As part of the deal, TV Loonland also obtains animation studio Sunbow Entertainment, which Sony Wonder bought in 1998. Sony will retain North American home video rights and international audio rights to their catalog of programming, which includes CLIFFORD and GENERATION O! Sony Wonder will also collaborate with TV Loonland on the home video and audio distribution of the German firms library in North America. "We are thrilled about the deal with Sony Wonder for a whole number of reasons," says Peter Volke, founder and CEO of TV Loonland. "TV Loonland gets a jumpstart with its own base in North America. We move right into a position as a leading program supplier in the most important market in the world. We acquire one of the worlds top childrens and family program rights catalogues and become one of the strongest international sales forces." This acquisition marks one more step by the Munich-based company to strengthen its foothold in all of the worlds major markets. Recently, it purchased Paris-based distribution house Salsa Distribution, a leader in the Latin market; British animation company Telemagination; and German family Internet service provider FamilyHarbor.de.