18 June 2024 The Irish Film & Television Network
Hasbro sells Irish animation studio Boulder Media to Australia's Princess Pictures
03 Nov 2022 : Nathan Griffin
Boulder Media
Australian production company Princess Pictures is acquiring Irish animation studio Boulder Media from its previous owner Hasbro, the international toy giant.

According to Deadline, the deal is the most notable Merger & Acquisition (M&A) in the international animation market for quite some time.

Purchased by Hasbro in 2016, Dublin-based Boulder Media is one of Ireland’s biggest animation studios, with the company’s credits including several major global IPs from My Little Pony and Transformers, to television series such as Wander Over Yonder, Danger Mouse, and Go Jetters, as well as multi-award-winning short film, Memento Mori. Boulder Media is run by general manager Jenni MacNeaney.

The acquisition of Boulder by Hasbro was seen as a major statement of intent by the toy manufacturer and showed its intent to make and own more content, and was later followed up by the acquisition of eOne, which owned Peppa Pig and PJ Masks. However, since then the company has turned its focus to producing its own Hasbro-branded IP and has a number of its other entertainment assets under strategic review.

Boulder’s new owners in Australia, Princess Pictures is known for producing both animation and live-action content and run by managing director Emma Fitzsimons. Of its animation credits, the company is best known for content tailored to adult audiences such as Smiling FriendsYolo Crystal Fantasy, and Yolo Silver Destiny for Adult Swim, and Koala Man for Hulu and 20th Television Animation.

The terms of the deal are said to have closed earlier this month with the acquisition expanding the Australian company’s production service capabilities for both its in-house projects and those it produces with third parties.

“We’re beyond thrilled to join Boulder Media to the Princess Pictures group,” Princess Pictures’ Managing Director Emma Fitzsimons told Deadline. “In Boulder, we have found a studio that boasts not only first-class artists but also kindred spirits that share our sense of humour and passion for great stories. Boulder Media has an established reputation in kids’ animation production and we’re going to add a new focus: prime-time adult comedy production.”

“This synergetic relationship opens up unique opportunities for our future slate and enables us to amplify our creative offering in the market,” added Boulder Managing Director Jenni MacNeaney. “It’s an exciting step forward in building the Boulder brand, one that values the great work we’ve produced over the last 22 years, while setting us up for future success.”

The financial terms of the sale have not been disclosed.

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