Manga acquisition - Anchor Bay Gets Animated
From the PR:
This is a busy time for Anchor Bay Entertainment: moving into theatrical distribution, launching a new label for kids and tieing-down several major catalogue deals. And this explosive activity shows no signs of letting-up.
ABE's giant parent company, IDT Entertainment, has just announced the acquisition of Manga Entertainment – one of the biggest Japanese anime specialists in the world – to be taken under the wing of Anchor Bay Entertainment. IDT also announced deals with Todd McFarlane Productions to resume production of the groundbreaking Spawn animated series and with POW! Entertainment (headed by comic book legend Stan Lee – creator of Spiderman, The Hulk, X-Men, Daredevil and others) for the co-production of several new animation projects for Direct-to-DVD release. All these projects will be distributed throughout the world by Anchor Bay Entertainment.
Established in London in 1991, Manga Entertainment has played an important role in developing the market for anime product in Europe and the US, moving into production as well as distribution and now boasts a catalogue of over 300 titles. The company earned international acclaim with its co-production of the Japanese animated sci-fi thriller Ghost In The Shell – the only Japanese animated feature film to reach Number One in the Billboard Top Video Sales chart and also winner of numerous awards around the world.
Although the Manga label will keep its identity in the UK, all other activities will come under the umbrella of Anchor Bay. To this end, Manga's Kim McCawley has already moved into the company's new home within ABE UK's London office where she will report to CEO Mo Claridge.
For ABE UK, these developments signal further awesome growth and rapid acceleration towards the company's stated goal of becoming one of the largest independent distributors in the UK and Europe.
Chief Executive Officer Mo Claridge says that every new deal by its acquisitive US parent means greater importance and growth for the UK company. "This is an exciting time to be leading Anchor Bay Entertainment in the UK", he says. "Each new announcement demonstrates clear synergy with our existing activities and means a new challenge for the talented team we have. In recent weeks we have added major new genres to our repertoire such as children's entertainment and now anime – complementing our core business and moving the company forward".