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Nordic World ‘disagreement’ leads to Geneste exit

Nordic World has terminated a consultancy agreement with Patty Geneste just weeks after completing a deal to acquire her formats distributor, Absolutely Independent, TBI can reveal.

Patty_GenesteGeneste’s departure follows a disagreement over the future direction of Nordic World, according to a statement on behalf of the Nordic World board from Trond Kvernstrom, who is director of Nordic World co-owner TV2 Norway.

It was initially agreed upon announcement of the deal in January that Geneste would take an “active management role” in the combined business.

This comes amid a restructure of the Nordic World business following the acquisition of Absolutely, which closed in October.

Following Geneste’s exit, Nordic World will continue to be run CEO Espen Huseby and chief operating officer and head of sales Jan Salling.

They will oversee the Absolutely catalogue, which comprises around 150 formats, but an announcement regarding “new positioning and future direction” of both Nordic World and Absolutely will come in future months.

“At this point, we are still examining our options as to the exact structure of Nordic World and Absolutely Independent’s role in the overall picture,” said Kvernstrom. “But what we can say for certain is that TV4 Sweden and TV2 Norway remain 100% committed to Nordic World and, by extension, our independent producer partners across the Nordic and Benelux regions, Ireland and Wales.

“Our focus now is to put the last few months of uncertainty behind us and concentrate on the many opportunities that exist for our exciting and surprising portfolio of formats and ready-made content.”

Nordic World, which TV2 and TV4 in Sweden co-own, announced a deal to acquire Netherlands-based Absolutely earlier this year, but the deal took longer than expected to close, sources with say.

Geneste, who began her career in formats at Endemol predecessor Joop van den Ende Productions before launching Absolutely in 1996, couldn’t be contacted for comment before press time this morning.