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DHX Media dips into Cookie Jar

Children's entertainment producer DHX Media Ltd. is buying Cookie Jar Entertainment in a $111-million deal that's expected to help the combined companies compete in the global marketplace to distribute content to digital platforms.

Children's entertainment producer DHX Media Ltd. is buying Cookie Jar Entertainment in a $111-million deal that's expected to help the combined companies compete in the global marketplace to distribute content to digital platforms.

Toronto-based Cookie Jar is already the No. 1 supplier of children's programming to online supplier Netflix, DHX Media CEO Michael Donovan said Monday.

"Families are increasingly accessing children's entertainment from sources other than traditional television and DVD sales," Donovan told a conference call to discuss the acquisition.

"Content is now available directly by way of computers, mobile, IPTV [Internet protocol television], standard television with an Internet connection, etc. Privately held Cookie is a leader in the digital distribution of its library."

DHX Media aid the transaction will be paid through a combination of 36 million in DHX shares, $5 million in cash and the assumption of $66 million of debt. Announcement of the transaction caused DHX's shares to surge more than 23 per cent, closing up 27 cents at $1.41 in morning trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Cookie Jar has digital distribution agreements with most of the leading digital providers.

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