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Entertainment One Expands

Entertainment One has acquired three television content suppliers: Blueprint Ent., Barna-Alper Productions, Maximum Films and Oasis International.

As a result, Blueprint is now part of a public company trading on the AIM exchange in the U.K. and operating as a fully integrated film and television production and distribution company with offices in Toronto, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, London, Holland and Belgium.

"Combining these three television companies creates an unrivalled cross-border force in television in North America supplying programs to most major broadcasters on both sides of the border," said Darren Throop, CEO of Entertainment One (E1). "Furthermore, the consolidation of Maximum Films together with E1's Seville Pictures will result in an enhanced theatrical market-share in Canada and a company which is enviably well positioned for international sales and distribution," he added.

"We are now able to create television programs at a unique risk-return profile and direct this content as well as our increased film content to our multiple territory distribution companies and realize all of the synergies of this direct access."

The E1 board is now looking to move to a dual listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the Main List in London in the current financial year.

E1 now controls a library of worldwide rights consisting of more than 9,300 hours of programming, which will be licensed to both international and domestic distributors and broadcasters by its tandem international sales operations -- Oasis for television product and Seville for theatrical films.