Lionsgate Reportedly May Acquire eOne from Hasbro

Lionsgate Reportedly May Acquire eOne from Hasbro

Lionsgate may be on the verge of acquiring Entertainment One (eOne) from Hasbro, according to Deadline.

eOne is a TV and film studio that generated The Rookie and Yellowjackets, among other productions.

Speculation is reportedly “intensifying” over the possible acquisition, given that Hasbro will be releasing its second-quarter earnings on Thursday of this week. The company’s CEO Chris Cocks had hinted he would have an updated report on the situation around this time. Deadline had earlier reported the likelihood that Lionsgate would be the favored suitor. Michael Burns, the vice chair of Lionsgate, also is a board member of Hasbro.

However, some sources are speculating the deal might not be as imminent as this week given the general slowdown of decision-making as a result of the SAG-AFTRA strike.
Among the eOne assets that Hasbro is putting up for sale are all of its scripted and unscripted television and film products, as well as a 6,500-title library and all of its interests in Canada.

The only exceptions would be brands like Peppa Pig and PJ Masks, which are part of Hasbro’s Family Brands Division.

Hasbro had acquired eOne in 2019 for $4 billion, only to shed eOne’s music business in 2021 to Blackstone, the private equity firm, which yielded $385 million. As a result of restructuring, eOne suffered significant staff cuts and layoffs in line with Hasbro’s plan to cut 15 percent of eOne’s worldwide workforce. That move would result in about 1,000 employees getting the axe.

Based in Toronto, eOne traces its origins to 1970 with the founding of Records on Wheels Limited, a music distributor, and the CD Plus retail music chain.

The company was known as ROW Entertainment when, in 2005, it Afterward, ROW began to diversify its operations into content ownership. In June 2005, it acquired Koch Entertainment, the American independent music distributor and home entertainment publisher and reincorporated itself as Entertainment One Income Fund. Until the 2019 deal with Hasbro, eOne involved itself in a dizzying series of acquisitions and spinoffs with American, Australian, Benelux, British and Australian companies.

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