Technicolor acquires The Mill, a leader in advertising VFX for €259 million

There are more colours being added to the Technicolor team as it has announced the acquisition of London-based The Mill, the world’s largest visual effects and content creation studio for the advertising industry, for a whopping €259 million on a debt-free basis. Founded in 1990, The Mill is consistently recognised by peers and clients as a premier visual effects provider for both advertising agencies and brands, and has earned in excess of 1,000 industry awards. It has operations in the key markets of London, New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. This acquisition accomplishes many objectives set out in Technicolor’s Drive 2020 strategic roadmap: · Establishes leadership positions for visual effects and digital creation across all segments of high-end content, including cinema, TV and advertising; · Reinforces Technicolor’s strong portfolio of brands including MPC, Mr. X and Mikros Image servicing a broad range of customers across 10 global locations; · Brings significant talent and expertise around emerging technologies such as virtual reality content that will enable Technicolor’s to enhance its technology platform across the entire industry; · Adds significant financial contribution with a business that has grown revenues at a 16 per cent CAGR since 2009 to reach €135 million in 2014 while delivering EBITDA margins of approximately 20 per cent; · Allows Production Services to better balance its portfolio through increased exposure to advertising and strengthens the financial profile of the Entertainment Services segment. With this acquisition Production Services accounting for approximately 40 per cent of Entertainment Services revenues. “In acquiring The Mill, we are executing on our Drive 2020 strategic objective of enhancing our market position in visual effects while improving profitability and revenue growth concurrently with accelerating deployment of emerging technologies,” said Technicolor CEO, Frederic Rose. “In The Mill, we have found a company that aligns with our focus on excellence in talent, technology and operational performance. It is a perfect fit.” With these two transactions, the Adjusted EBITDA floor that Technicolor has set for 2020 (at least €500 million) as part of its Drive 2020 strategic roadmap will be achieved by 2017 while maintaining a strong cash flow generation. The transaction combined with the acquisition of Cisco Connected Devices will translate into high double digit EPS accretion for the full year 2016. The Company will update its Drive 2020 financial objectives concurrent with its full year 2015 results. Concurrent with the announcements of the strategic acquisitions of Cisco Connected Devices on 23 July, 2015 and of The Mill today, Technicolor will launch an Incremental Term Loan of €375 million equivalent aggregate principal amount, to help fund those transactions in conjunction with the planned Rights Offering and cash on hand. The Incremental Term Loan is being led by Goldman Sachs International as Sole Lead Arranger and Bookrunner.
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