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Starz Animation for sale

Our friend Mark Mayerson posted this little tidbit on his blog the other day:

Toronto’s Starz For Sale

Variety is reporting that Starz Media, which consists of Overture, Anchor Bay Entertainment, Film Roman and Starz Animation are for sale. The companies are available as a group or separately.

Starz was formerly owned by IDT and before that was Dan Krech Productions. It is one of the larger employers in the Toronto animation business.

I’ve read the comments that followed and read the article, along with a few others.  There’s been no official comment out of Starz Animation itself, but here’s my take on it.

Don’t panic.  Yes, there have been some layoffs over the past number of months at Starz, but there have also been some new hires too.  The last time I was there, I saw quite a few more desks filled since my previous visit.  They’re subject to production cycles, just like everyone else, and they’ve proven themselves to be a pretty solid employer.

This news doesn’t appear to be all that new, and there’s been no impact yet.  Yes, Starz Animation is technically available for purchase.  The parent company in the US  has been restructuring some entities for awhile and with that has come some executive shuffling. So, “Starz is focused on completing the sale of the Starz Media division that houses Overture, Anchor Bay Entertainment, Film Roman and Starz Animation“.  Any or all of these companies, divisions of Starz Media, itself a division of Starz, might be sold at some point.  Could be this year, maybe next, maybe never. The truth is that the studio in Toronto has done good business, so typically they would look at other divisions that are not profitable in the U.S. first.

Also, they’ve just renewed their ad here on the site, so I’d say that bodes pretty well for the company.




  1. BB BB July 9, 2010

    How convenient. The Ontario government pours in $23M (, and Starz decides now is a good time to sell. No wonder…. I’m sure the Ontario tax payers will be thrilled to learn that their tax money has been used to bolster the studio’s books making it a very attractive buy/sell target. Reminds me of Michael Hirsh’s pump and dump of Nelvana 10 years ago. Wasn’t Corus surprised to find that the $500M valuation was inflated and they had to write down $450M in the following years?! Ouch. Good luck to whoever is interested.

    This news is also very sad considering some of that $23M could have been used to guranatee the Core loans and help it restructure and return to profitability so it had a chance of meeting its obligations to the bank. I don’t have any special fondness for Core but at least they were Canadian.

  2. mellow mellow July 16, 2010

    Who’s this guy Mark Mayerson?
    Why is he important?

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