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ITV buys UK indie 12 Yard for £26 million

ITV has shelled out £26 million ($53m) for UK indie 12 Yard. The UK broadcaster will pay a further payment of up to £9 million in 2011. The formats outfit was previously owned by UK-listed indie Hat-Trick and the management team of David Young and Andy Culpin.

12 Yard is behind a number of hit formats, several of which air on the BBC including Weakest Link. International sales were previously handled by third-party distributors including Zeal, but will now be handled by ITV’s Granada International.

ITV Global Content boss Dawn Airey said more deals are in the offing: “We are delighted that 12 Yard is ITV’s first acquisition since the announcement of our growth strategy, and I look forward to making further announcements in due course.”

David Young, managing director of 12 Yard said: “At a time when the demand for global hit formats is greater than ever, Andy Culpin and I believe that this new home can help establish the company as one of the leading creators and producers of entertainment formats across the world.”