DIC Entertainment chairman and CEO Andy Heyward has partnered with Bain Capital Inc in a management buyout of DIC from The Walt Disney Co. Heyward will continue as chairman and CEO of the animation studio which has more than 2,500 half-hours of programming in its library.
DIC became a unit of the Disney Filmed Entertainment division following
Disney's buyout of Capital Cities/ABC in 1995 since DIC had previously formed a
limited partnership with ABC. But Heyward has long desired to return to his roots as an independent producer and distributor of children's programming.
Under the buyout, DIC will continue to be a supplier to numerous Disney units; Disney has renewed Sabrina, The Animated Series for ABC and 26 new episodes of Madeline for The Disney Channel as well as co-producing two direct-to-video films with DIC for release through Buena Vista Home Video. In addition a sequel to DIC's live action Inspector Gadget film is in development at Walt Disney Pictures.
At MIPCOM recently in preparation for the buyout DIC relaunched its international sales division under Patricia Ryan.