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People to meet: Electus COO Drew Buckley

Electus, the digital studio and international production company set up by former NBC boss Ben Silverman, is one of the most talked about TV companies to launch in recent years. Chief operating officer Buckley, who joined from Terry Semel’s Windsor Media in October 2009, is one of Silverman’s key lieutenants.

The company has struck a raft of exciting deals with A-list talent including Arrested Development‘s Will Arnett and Jason Bateman (through their DumbDumb outfit), Israeli production company Abbot Reif Hameiri, sibling IAC company College Humor and reality producers 5×5 Media.

The company also lured MTV execs Tony DiSanto and Liz Gateley away from the Viacom-owned broadcaster to start their own indie – DiGa. “Tony and Liz revolutionized MTV with shows like Jersey Shore and The Hills and now it’s time to sink their teeth into their own label,” says Buckley, who was also previously general manager of Yahoo! Originals. 

“What you saw in 2010 was us launching things digitally, then you’ll see reality TV and then scripted is the longer play because it takes time to get things right,”

Electus has also received its first major television commissions including America Ferrera-produced telenovela Pedro & Maria and William the Conqueror and Peacekeeper for US cable network Starz.

As well as striking a number of joint-venture partnerships and old studio style deals, Buckley says that it has been looking for companies to acquire as it expands.

“[Acquisitions are something that [Barry] Diller is well known for and it’s something that he’s pushing us to do,” adds Buckley.