Not all the MIP action is about selling programs. It’s also about selling out execs.
On Tuesday, market attendees were surprised to hear that TV Loonland CEO Selma Kappel had been defenestrated from her perch. The award-winning ex-CEO got the axe after a battle with the company’s largest investor.
According to the company website, Kappel has been replaced with Simon Flamank, the former CEO of U.K. video distributor Prism Leisure Corp. and a consultant to TV Loonland. Reportedly hours before the move, Kappel told The Hollywood Reporter that she was “confident we are close to reaching an agreement with our shareholders over the direction of this company.”
Apparently not. The beginning of the end of Kappel came last year when Monaco corporate raider Michael Briem bought out TV Loonland founder and former CEO Peter Voelke to take a large minority stake. In December, Briem boosted his stake to more than 42%, making him the largest single shareholder.
From the outset, Kappel said Briem wanted to eviscerate Loonland and sell off the parts to the highest bidder. That set off a battle royal which apparently ended with yesterday’s action. Ironically, Kappel was at MIPTV this week to announce TV Loonland’s latest animated offerings, which include Little Princess, Cramp Twins, Pettson and Findus and the feature-length project, Heidi.