- Sony takes majority stake in London-based producer of Netflix hit Sex Education
- Latest in a series of production company investments by Sony
- Sony also buys out Channel 4’s minority stake in Eleven
Sony Pictures Television has confirmed its acquisition of London-based Eleven, the producers of Netflix hit series Sex Education.
Founded in 2006 by Jamie Campbell and Joel Wilson, Eleven’s drama credits include E4’s Glue, Sky Living’s The Enfield Haunting and E4’s Gap Year.
Eleven’s Sex Education, from writer and creator Laurie Nunn, debuted in January 2019 and generated more than 40m views in its first month. It returned for a second season in January 2020 and has been recommissioned for a third season, which will soon enter production.
Eleven also has two other commissions in the pipeline: Tom Hiddleston-starring political thriller White Stork for Netflix, and BBC young adult horror series Red Rose.
SPT’s majority stake investment in Eleven is part of a Sony strategy to diversify its production portfolio and grow its IP.
SPT acquired kids producer Silvergate Media in December 2019 and sports and live entertainment indie Whisper Films in February 2020.
The acquisition brings to an end the Channel 4 Indie Growth Fund’s involvement in Eleven. In 2014 the Channel 4 Growth Fund’s minority stake investment made Eleven the first drama production company to benefit from the fund.
Wayne Garvie, president of international production at Sony Pictures Television, said: “For some time, we have watched on as Jamie and Joel built one of the most exciting drama companies in the UK…In the midst of the Covid crisis, this acquisition also demonstrates Sony’s underlying faith in the future success of British production and desire to keep on entertaining the world.”
“We are deeply proud of the world-class slate of scripted shows we have in development, and no one in the world is better positioned than Sony to help us convert it,” said Eleven’s Jamie Campbell and Joel Wilson of the deal.
Tom Manwaring of Helion Partners advised the shareholders of Eleven Film on the transaction.