Having amassed a library of around 1,900 titles since its foundation in 1979, the Benelux stalwart is the latest target of a fast-paced acquisition spree launched by fledgling E1, which only started trading in March of last year.
Lead by E1 CEO Darren Throop and E1 Filmed Entertainment president Patrice Theroux, the company can now rightfully describe itself as a studio, controlling as it does distribution entities in North America, the UK, Belgium and Netherlands. Moreover, it is backed by $600m in annual revenue from its position as the largest distributor of home entertainment products in the Canadian market.
Speaking to Screendaily, Theroux reiterated his respect for the business model of the belated PolyGram Filmed Entertainment. 'The multi-territory reach gives you buying power with producers and sellers. RCV is a market leader in its territory.' The acquisition expands an already significant distribution footprint for theatrical features and television product. Theroux said more acquisitions are coming. 'Don't be surprised if you see consolidations in markets where we are already operating.'
RCV releases an average of 35 theatrical films and many more home entertainment titles per year. According to a release, RCV's all-rights library is a lucrative investment; library sales accounted for more than 40 per cent of RCV's 2006 revenue.
RCV CEO Jan Kouwenhoven and COO Joke Wartenbergh have signed long-term employment agreements. They will report to Theroux's Filmed Entertainment division.
E1 holds all rights to Summit Entertainment features in Canada and the UK and to Image Entertainment content in Canada, and is the largest distributor of home entertainment products in the Canadian market. It owns Canadian distribution and international sales unit Seville Entertainment, US-based Koch Entertainment, the largest independent record label in North America and a leading independent distributor of music and video in the US, and Contender Entertainment Group, one of the leading independent UK distributors of filmed entertainment.