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BBC Worldwide & BBC Studios merge to form commercial powerhouse

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By John Glenday, Reporter

November 30, 2017 | 2 min read

The BBC is beefing up its commercial activities in the face of continued budget cuts with a merger of BBC Worldwide and BBC Studios to form a single organisation, cementing an existing partnership that sees both arms collaborate closely on content – most recently with Blue Planet II.

BBC Worldwide, bbc studios

The BBC is beefing up its commercial activities

Referred to as BBC Studios the combined entity will integrate programme production and sales and distribution, offering efficiencies of scale and streamlined management.

Driving the merger is a growing realisation within the BBC that it must do more to capitalise on its assets as a cultural export, maximising the intellectual property value of its back catalogue. It will also bring the BBC into line with commercial rivals at home and abroad that already integrate programme production in a similar manner.

BBC director-general Tony Hall said: “In a fast-changing TV industry, securing the future success of the BBC is vital.

“Creating a single BBC Studios will bring the BBC in line with the industry, be simpler and more efficient. It will help ensure that licence fee payers in the UK continue to receive outstanding British programmes which reflect British lives, long into the future.

“It will also ensure the BBC can continue to play its crucial role in supporting the successful UK creative economy.”

Led by chief executive officer Tim Davie and chief creative officer Mark Linsey the enlarged BBC Studios is expected to commence operations from 1 April 2018.

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