Entertainment One Ltd., the Canadian company responsible for distributing the Oscar-winning film Spotlight and owner of the popular children’s cartoon Peppa Pig, has rejected a takeover offer from a British broadcaster.
ITV, a Britain-based broadcaster responsible for shows such as Downtown Abbey and Coronation Street, had been pursuing a takeover since April, according to reports, which bolstered eOne share prices in recent months.
EOne would bring the Peppa Pig franchise, which brought in more than $1-billion (U.S.) in worldwide retail sales in 2015, as well as international distribution, furthering ITV’s expansion into production as it reduces its reliance on network advertising.
In 2014, eOne made five investments or an acquisition, including a joint venture with the Mark Gordon Company, which has produced shows such as Grey’s Anatomy and movies such as Saving Private Ryan.
Two years earlier, the company bought Alliance Films for $174-million, plus debt, in a deal that boosted the company’s profile as a major international independent film distributor, bringing aboard titles like The Hunger Games.