Television Business International

GroupM creates new premium content group

Advertising agency group GroupM is pushing further into premium TV production and financing by creating a new globally-focused content company.

GroupM Richard FosterThe WPP-owned GroupM has created Motion Content Group, which is being billed as an investment and rights management firm.

Motion’s creation is part of a push “to meet the ever-growing market demand for new economic models for premium content across the entertainment and media marketplace”.

To this point, GroupM has played a role in content and programming financing through GroupM Entertainment, which has become an increasingly important coproducer both in the UK and internationally.

GroupM Entertainment’s head, Richard Foster (pictured), has been appointed CEO of Motion, which will have headquarters in London and LA.

In effect, Motion will replace GroupM Entertainment, working with producers, talent and distributors to fund, develop, produce and sell premium content.

According to the firm, it will also “consolidate and diversify GroupM’s content investments and operations-to-date, as well as utilise GroupM and WPP’s worldwide network of relationship and content expertise for scale and competitive advantage”.

GroupM’s various ad agencies will continue to work on branded content for clients separately to Motion.

“With new content companies such as Netflix and Amazon growing rapidly, the competition for premium content is heating up across the globe,” said Martin Sorrell, CEO of global ad giant WPP.

“WPP is investing in Motion Content Group to strengthen our content creation and distribution capabilities, to help meet evolving viewer needs, and to help advertisers continue to reach consumers in high quality content environments.”

Kelly Clark, GroupM’s CEO, added: “We have always used our global scale and reach to find innovative approaches that strengthen the media ecosystem for advertisers and media partners alike. Motion is a major commitment by GroupM to expand on these efforts.”

Motion CEO Foster said the firm’s objective was “to help create and support editorially and commercially vibrant premium content for the benefit of our content partners and advertisers”.

“We will achieve this by continuing to invest into the content industry and lead the development of new models, commercial content structures and partnerships with media networks, platforms, talent, producers, and distributors,” he added.