plans to purchase an entertainment company that holds the rights to children’s entertainment properties “Peppa Pig” and “Pj Masks” in a deal that values the company at roughly $4 billion. Hasbro said Thursday afternoon it has agreed to acquire Entertainment One Ltd.
for 5.6 pounds a share, which equates to roughly $4 billion. Beyond owning children’s TV programming that could help Hasbro, the move also gives Hasbro access to the film and TV enterprises and distribution that Canada-based eOne offers, executives said in the announcement. “The acquisition of eOne adds beloved story-led global family brands that deliver strong operating returns to Hasbro’s portfolio and provides a pipeline of new brand creation driven by family-oriented storytelling, which will now include Hasbro’s IP,” Hasbro Chief Executive Brian Goldner said. “In addition, Hasbro will leverage eOne’s immersive entertainment capabilities to bring our portfolio of brands that have appeal to gamers, fans and families to all screens globally and realize full franchise economics across our blueprint strategy for shareholders.” Hasbro said that the eOne acquisition would be accretive to earnings in the year after the deal closes, which Hasbro expects will happen in the fourth quarter. Hasbro expects to finance the deal with $1 billion to $1.25 billion in cash from equity financing and cover the rest with debt financing from bank of America. It will suspend its stock repurchases as it completes the deal, but maintain its dividend payments, according to the announcement. Hasbro shares were unaffected in immediate late trading.
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