Elephant joined the group Webedia

Six months after the betrothal, the wedding. The group of digital media Webedia (Allociné, jeuxvideos.com, PurePeople, Mixicom...), directed by Véronique Morali

Elephant joined the group Webedia

Six months after the betrothal, the wedding. The group of digital media Webedia (Allociné, jeuxvideos.com, PurePeople, Mixicom...), directed by Véronique Morali and Cedric Siré, buys 51 % of the share capital of the group's audiovisual production Elephant (the magazine "Seven to eight" on TF1, the series Do not, do not like it...) , co-founded by Emmanuel Chain and Thierry Bizot. Six months ago, the groups had created a joint company to produce magazines and series. The first format, The "Grand Oral" on France 2, there has been a low score for a hearing, but the chain has signed for a second season.

today, it is the announcement of the official wedding. "We have always been very attached to our independence, and despite a dozen proposals of redemption, we've never given away," says Emmanuel Chain. "But we have 20 years this year and it is time to start a new story, to build a new world." In this approximation, the Elephant retains editorial independence guaranteed by a shareholders pact, and its two co-founders, who will have the opportunity to buy a share in the capital of Webedia, enter the comex to be associated with strategic decisions. "Webedia has done many acquisitions to complement its business, but this is the first time that we open the doors of our executive committee", adds Véronique Morali, president of the management board of Webedia.

Break the codes

If the two groups unite, it is to implement an ambitious project. "Our businesses are complementary. We are leaders in digital media and the international already represents a third of our turnover. Elephant is a producer of dramas, documentaries and magazines to success," says Véronique Morali. "Most importantly, together we want to break the codes. There is not a side of the television with a senior audience and, on the other, the digital with millennials", she adds. The two groups now want to create premium content intended to become trademarks or intellectual property, and that will be aired on both channels, platforms of streaming, and all social networks. "The big challenge for broadcasters is to rejuvenate their audiences, and they will know that working with us they will be able to have content that will speak to all audiences on all channels", stresses Emmanuel Chain.

from two different cultures, the two groups have in common a vision of the entrepreneurs . Elephant, founded in 1999, comes from the traditional audiovisual and realizes a turnover of a hundred million euros, mostly in France. Webedia was formed in 2007 directly in the digital world. In 2013, Marc Ladreit de Lacharrière via Fimalac had bought the young company Webedia with the ambition to make a group of 500 million euros radiating to the international. After numerous acquisitions, the bet is successful. Webedia displays a turnover of 400 million euros in 2018, of which $ 133 million internationally, of the United States to Brazil via Germany or Spain. With Elephant, the new group achieved € 500 million of turnover.

Propose a series to Netflix

If the first size goal is reached, it remains now to write a new story within a studio that wants to be "a small kind of Disney" according to the expression of Marc Ladreit de Lacharrière. The set will be structured in four trades. The first, that of production, is placed under the responsibility of the teams of the Elephant. He already weighs about 85 million euros of turnover. Then come to the digital media, about 65 million euros of activity, which will be conducted by teams of Webedia. The third business is the one of the communication agency companies ("brand content") that mixes the assets of the two groups and weighs in at 65 million euros of turnover. Finally comes the job of merchandising and valuation of intellectual property, with already thirty million euros of activity.

In production, the new Webedia is clearly the major platforms of streaming for their offer to co-produce the series. Elephant is currently developing possible programs for Disney or Amazon. It brings to Webedia, which has forged close commercial links with Netflix, writing talent and creation to push new projects by 2019.

Updated Date: 06 March 2019, 00:00

Kathleen Lees

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