Earlier this year, Disney agreed to pay $500m in cash for YouTube MCN Maker Studios, with another $450m of performance-related bonuses also on the table. That seemed to be that, but yesterday the deal could have been hijacked by another big media firm: film company Relativity Media. The company tried to gazump Disney’s already-accepted offer with its own deal involving $500m in stock and another $400m (also in stock) based on financial targets, with a further $100m “bonus pool” for key talent and executives at Maker if they ditched Disney. They didn’t. Maker said that its board of directors had already accepted Disney’s offer. “Maker Studios, its employees and its roster of talent would have greatly benefited from Relativity’s platform, its entrepreneurial approach and promising growth potential,” said Relativity in a statement seemingly accepting the refusal. The episode highlights the current frenzied market around big entertainment MCNs, despite regular reports that most of them are still losing money.

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