US talent agency Creative Artists to acquire rival ICM Partners

Bridgerton

US talent giant Creative Artists Agency (CAA) is to acquire rival ICM Partners in a shock move that will leave Hollywood with just three major agencies.

Details of the price have not been revealed but the deal is expected to close later this year and will transform LA’s agency landscape, leaving just CAA, Endeavor-backed WME and United Talent Agency.

The acquisition will see private equity-backed CAA add ICM’s lucrative publishing arm to its interests, which are primarily focused on film and TV.

ICM is also home to Breaking Bad’s Vince Gilligan, director Spike Lee and Bridgerton’s Shonda Rhimes among numerous others, while CAA houses Tom Hanks and Ryan Murphy.

ICM chief Chris Silbermann will join the board at CAA, which is led by Kevin Huvane, Richard Lovett and Bryan Lourd.

Background

The deal follows a tumultuous two years for US agencies, which made numerous layoffs as the pandemic affected the traditional production cycle.

Agencies have also been hit by the decision to stop ‘packaging’ series following an ongoing battle with the Writers Guild of America.

Lourd, Huvane and Lovett said the deal would “bolster our collective resources, expertise and relationships” to deliver more opportunities to its clients worldwide and across platforms.

“Our strong financial position enables us to continue to expand and diversify our businesses, with service and representation remaining central to what we do and who we are.”

Silbermann added: “Together, we will build upon our accomplishments and entrepreneurial spirit and continue to demonstrate an unwavering commitment to the best interests of our clients, as well as empowering new, diverse voices within the industry.”

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