The television production company best known for reality and game shows including "Big Brother" and "Wipeout" is making a big push into scripted programming in the United States.
Endemol USA, a unit of Dutch-based Endemol Group, plans to focus primarily on developing dramas for cable networks. The company has already had some success in that arena, selling the series "Hell on Wheels" to AMC, the cable channel whose other shows include "Mad Men" and "Breaking Bad."
The move echoes the strategy of its parent company, which has increased its scripted programming output by almost 50% in the last three years. Endemol Group produces scripted fare primarily in Holland, Italy, Spain and Australia. It also has a presence in Britain and in Argentina, where it makes telenovelas.
Endemol's push to broaden its U.S. presence comes less than two months after the departure of Ynon Kreiz from his position of chairman and chief executive of the parent company, which has been going through a financial restructuring of its heavy debt load. Endemol's board appointed Marco Bassetti, the company's group president, and Just Spee, the group chief financial officer, to manage the company.