Blue Ant acquires Racat Group, signals further Asia growth

The deal sees the Toronto-based media co take ownership of five prodcos and TV networks, including Singapore-based Beach House Pictures.
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Toronto-based Blue Ant Media has acquired international media company The Racat Group.

Under the deal, Blue Ant Media will take ownership of five commonly owned media production companies and television networks operating out of North and South America, Australia, New Zealand, and South East and Northern Asia.

Included in the purchase is Dunedin, New Zealand-based NHNZ, a company that has, for the last 40 years, specialized in natural history and documentary programming, including the recent five-part docuseries Big Pacific (pictured).

Also purchased are Singapore-based Beach House Pictures, which has created more than 600 hours of factual and entertainment programming, including Frontier Borneo; Sydney-based Northern Pictures, which licenses factual and documentary content such as Life on the Reef and Kakadu to digital and traditional channels throughout Australia and internationally.

Blue Ant will also acquire 70% of international children’s nature broadcaster ZooMoo Networks, a joint venture with AT&T’s DirecTV Latin America, which retains 30% of the business, providing original nature and wildlife content across Latin America and Asia, as well as New Zealand-based indie mobile game developer Runaway Play.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

As a result of Blue Ant’s international growth, the company has named Racat consultant Ward Platt to the newly created post of CEO of kids and global networks.

Effective Sept. 1, Platt will be responsible for bolstering Blue Ant’s global linear and digital channels strategy outside of Canada and New Zealand. Based in Los Angeles, he reports into Raja Khanna, Blue Ant Media’s CEO of television and digital.

Platt has previously held COO and CEO roles with National Geographic Partners and Fox International Channels, and National Geographic Channels International, respectively.

“Blue Ant Media is an ambitious company, well positioned to significantly grow its content production, distribution and channel businesses internationally, notably in Asia Pacific which is why this acquisition is so important for our business,” said Michael MacMillan, co-founder and CEO of Blue Ant Media, in a statement.

Blue Ant Media produces and distributes television and online video content that encompasses factual, fact-ent, short-form digital series and kids programming. The privately held company also operates an international channels business that now includes ZooMoo Networks, Smithsonian Channel Canada, nature and wildlife channels Love Nature and BBC Earth in Canada, HGTV in New Zealand and music channel A.Side (formerly AUX).

From Realscreen