Peel Media Approaches Pinewood About Takeover

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The national press was buzzing with reports this week that Peel Media has made a takeover approach to studio group Pinewood Shepperton. Peel, which already owns 29.7% of Pinewood, is best known as being the company behind the MediaCity development in Salford. Its offer is reckoned to value the Pinewood business at around £88 million.

Pinewood, which has hosted a range of film and TV product examples such as Harry Potter, Clash of the Titans and Dancing On Ice, has had a rocky time recently. However, its latest results showed a 31% rise in pre-tax profits to £5.8m and an 8% increase in revenues to £43.4m, suggesting that the business has come through the downturn in good shape.
Pinewood confirmed that an approach had been made, but went on to stress that it “may or may not lead to an offer being made for the company.” If Peel was successful, it would takeover at a time when Pinewood is a) seeking to expand its activities overseas and b) trying to get permission for a £200 million UK development which is intended to make the business competitive with facilities in the US.

Other recent Pinewood initiatives include a scheme to invest in low budget British films in the hope of spawning another success along the lines of Oscar-winner The King's Speech.