Qatar-based beIN buys 100% of Miramax film studio

AP

A Qatar-based media group that has already moved into international sports broadcasting has purchased a 100 percent stake in the film studio Miramax, part of its expansion into the entertainment business.

The beIN Media Group, which earlier spun off from Doha’s Al-Jazeera network, bought the studio famous for “Pulp Fiction,” “No Country for Old Men” and “The English Patient” from investors including Colony Capital and the Qatar Investment Authority, the Gulf nation’s sovereign wealth fund.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed in a statement announcing the purchase late Wednesday. The beIN network did not respond to requests for comment Thursday.

“Miramax is a successful film and television company, providing a strong and recognizable brand, a unique library and industry expertise that complement beIN Media Group’s plans to grow across the entertainment industry and develop new content production,” Nasser Al-Khelaifi, beIN’s chairman and CEO, said in the statement.

Producers Harvey and Bob Weinstein founded Miramax in 1979, naming it after their parents Miriam and Max. They built it into one of the most successful independents in the movie business, churning out many of the hits of 1990s independent cinema.

Walt Disney Co. acquired Miramax in 1993 for some $60 million. Disney sold the studio in 2010 to a group of investors for $660 million.

The move to purchase Miramax comes as beIN expands its presence across the world after purchasing rights to broadcast European football leagues and others sports. Qatar itself is spending tens of billions of dollars ahead of hosting the 2022 World Cup.

But the purchase also comes as Qatar faces pressure from low global oil and gas prices, which fuel its economy.