Corus Entertainment, one of Canada's leading media concerns, is to buy Canadian children's entertainment house Nelvana for $374m, the two companies announced on Monday.

Boards at both companies have approved the acquisition, which was expected. Nelvana shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange climbed to record levels this week.

"Nelvana's focus - children's entertainment - is completely in line with Corus' strategy," said John Cassaday, president and chief executive officer of Corus. "The new revenue opportunities we can create together through vertical integration and the leverage of content and cross-promotion on multiple platforms will strengthen Corus' position."

Corus, which is listed on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges, has interests encompassing 48 radio stations, specialist TV networks and pay-TV. Amid takeover rumours last week, Corus made the purchase at a price of $32.4 per share.

Nelvana is a children's entertainment company with assets including TV and feature properties such as Franklin, Little Bear, Babar, Rupert and Pippi Longstocking.

"In response to the global trend towards the convergence of content and distribution, we are confident this significant potential will be realized within Corus," said Michael Hirsh, co-chief executive officer of Nelvana. "In joining forces with Corus, Nelvana has cemented access to greater capital to build the world's premiere independent children's entertainment company."