Charlie Brown And The 'Peanuts' Acquired By DHX Media For $345 Million

By Trey WilliamsMarketsMarketWatch Pulse

DHX Media Ltd. , a Canadian children's brand and content company responsible for "Teletubbies" and "Yo Gabba Gabb!," said on Wednesday it's reached an agreement to buy the Peanuts and Strawberry Shortcake in a deal valued at $345 million. DHX Media is acquiring the entertainment division of Iconix Brand Group Inc., which owns 100% of Strawberry Shortcake and an 80% controlling interest in "Peanuts" -- the other 20% will remain with the family of 'Peanuts' creator Charles M. Schulz. "'Peanuts' and 'Strawberry Shortcake' have widespread, evergreen appeal that make them ideal for layering onto this platform, complementing our 450-title library, and significantly increasing our scale in consumer products," said DHX Media Chief Executive Dana Landry in a statement. "These brands are expected to drive meaningful growth across multiple revenue streams, and we look forward to extending their reach to new generations of kids worldwide." DHX Media said it expects the deal to increase revenue on a pro forma basis by 52%, as well as annual cost synergies of C$25 million within the first year of the deal closing. DHX Media plans to pay for the acquisition with debt and has entered a commitment agreement with RBC Capital Markets and Jefferies Finance. Shares of DHX Media have declined nearly 16% in the year to date and almost 20% in the trialing 12-month period.

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