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Time Warner set to make a move on Shed

David Hellier
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TIME WARNER, the media giant behind Sex and the City, is close to acquiring Shed Media, the producer of iconic shows such as Footballers’ Wives and Supernanny.

Shed has already announced that takeover discussions with a management buy-out group, backed by Bowmark Capital and Darwin Private Equity, have fallen through but at the time it said it had received a proposal from a third party.

Yesterday Shed refused to comment, but would not deny that Warner is the third party.

An industry source said that Warner is the right size to make a bid and added it would be “sensible” to assume that an announcement will follow shortly.

Shed is expected to make the formal announcement this week, depending on how its share price reacts to the reports of a bid.

Shed has been talking going private since December last year. Industry sources suggested a bid price of above £85m.

Shed was established in 1998 by Eileen Gallagher and floated on AIM in March 2005.

Gallagher has a shareholding of 7.49 per cent. She is the third largest individual shareholder behind Alex Graham, who owns 11.89 per cent and Nicholas Powell, CEO of Ricochet, who owns 11.66 per cent.

TIME LINE |
● 1998
Founded by Eileen Gallagher, formerly a press officer with Scottish Television. It specialises in producing long-running dramas including Waterloo Road, Bad Girls and Footballers’ Wives.

● March 2005
Floated on AIM

● November 2005
Acquired Ricochet, a production company specialising in factual entertainment. It created and produces the global brand Supernanny.

● September 2006
Acquired Outright Distribution.

● November 2007
Acquired multiple BAFTA winner Wall to Wall which produces factual and drama programmes, including Who Do You Think You Are? and The Day Britain Stopped. Alex Graham founded Wall to Wall.

● 2008
After ten years as MD and then CEO Gallagher stands down to return to a creative role as CEO of Shed Productions.

● 2009
Shed announced that it had rejected a takeover offer by the company’s management. The offer of £1 a share was rejected in December 2008 and talks ended in January 2009.

● 2009
Created a Los Angeles-based US umbrella company, Shed Media US, to make US buyers more familiar with the brand.