Sky has bought a majority stake in independent factual production house True North, the firm behind A New Life in the Sun, Teen Mom UK, Building the Dream, Homes by the Sea, Junior Vets on Call, The Lie Detective and Breaking the Silence Live.
Founded in 2001 and is run by the Jess Fowle and Andrew Sheldon, True North was previously backed by Channel 4’s Indie Growth Fund and is headquartered in Leeds with a second base in Manchester.
Sky has also invested in UK-based television drama production company, Chrysalis Vision, which was founded by experienced media executives Chris Wright CBE, Mick Pilsworth, Roger Parry CBE and Luke Johnson, who have a strong track record in producing long-running drama series.
Led by Mick Pilsworth (CEO), the Chrysalis Vision team includes Sue Gibbs as Creative Director and Clova McCallum as Development Executive, and has a substantial, wide-ranging slate in development.
The deals are the latest in a series of acquisitions by Sky in recent years, including the purchase of Great British Bake Off off producers Love Productions, and further reduces the broadcaster’s reliance on consumer subscription revenue.
As part of the agreements, Sky Vision will become the commercial and distribution partner for content, worldwide, for both True North and Chrysalis Vision. Existing terms with other broadcasters and distributors remain unchanged.
Jane Millichip, Managing Director at Sky Vision, said: “We’re excited to be investing in True North. Jess and Andrew have a fantastic reputation for creating and delivering high quality returnable series.
“We’re also delighted to be working with Mick and Chris, who have a great track record in building successful, creative businesses, and the whole team at Chrysalis Vision which will bolster our drama ambitions.”