Endemol was a Dutch-based media company that produced and distributed multiplatform entertainment content. The company annually produced more than 15,000 hours of programming across scripted and non-scripted genres, including drama, reality TV, comedy, game shows, entertainment, factual and children's programming.

IndustryProduction company
Television production
Film distributor
FateMerged with Shine Group
SuccessorEndemol Shine Group
Founded1994 (1994)
FounderJoop van den Ende, John de Mol 
Defunct2015 (2015) (except Endemol Portugal)
Key people
Sophie Turner Laing (CEO)
OwnerEndemol Shine Group

Endemol, a global network of operations in more than 30 countries, works with over 300 broadcasters, digital platforms and licensees worldwide. The business covers development, production, marketing, distribution, franchise management and multi-platform initiatives including digital video, gaming and apps.

Endemol was merged into Endemol Shine Group (a joint-venture between The Walt Disney Company and Apollo Global Management) and headquartered in the Netherlands in 2015. Endemol created and ran reality, talent and game show franchises worldwide, including Big Brother, Deal or No Deal, Wipeout, The Money Drop, and Your Face Sounds Familiar. The company also has a portfolio of drama and comedy series including titles such as The Fall, Peaky Blinders, Hell on Wheels, Benidorm, Ripper Street, Black Mirror, Bad Education, My Mad Fat Diary, Hot in Cleveland, Kirstie, Leverage, Home and Away, Death Comes to Pemberley and The Crimson Field.


Endemol was founded in 1994 by a merger of television production companies owned by Joop van den Ende and John de Mol, the name deriving from the combination of their surnames.[1]

Endemol has specialised in formatted programming that can be adapted for different countries around the world as well as different media platforms. One notable success has been the Big Brother reality television show, with versions in many countries after the initial Dutch version. Other examples include Deal or No Deal (sold to over 75 countries), The Money Drop (sold in over 50 countries), Fear Factor (sold in 30 countries) and Wipeout (sold in over 30 countries). In recent years the company has also been expanding its English language drama output with shows such as titles such as The Fall, Peaky Blinders, Ripper Street and Black Mirror in the UK and Hell on Wheels in the USA. In November 2013 the company launched Endemol Beyond, an international division specialising in original content for digital video platforms such as YouTube.

In 2000, Endemol was sold to the Spanish telecom and media corporation Telefónica for €5.5 billion. In November 2005, 25% of Endemol was taken public, and is since then listed on the Euronext Amsterdam exchange under the stock symbol EML. On 14 May 2007 the remaining 75% of Endemol shares were bought by a consortium, Edam Acquisition, led by Mediaset, the company controlled by Silvio Berlusconi's family, and including the investment company Cyrte, in which the original co-founder John de Mol has shares.[2] The consortium announced on 6 August 2007, that it now owned 99.54% of Endemol shares, after an offer to buy the remaining shares went through on 3 August 2007; it asked the Euronext bourse for a delisting of Endemol.[3]

It was reported in 2010 that the company was $3 billion in debt.[4][5] Then in 2011, it was reported that the debt had grown to $4.1 billion.[6]

A loan restructure was planned for 2011 when Endemol was expected to breach its debt covenants.[7] On 30 June, the debt covenants were breached at the same time that CEO Ynon Kreiz left the company and Endemol's UK subsidiary failed to file its annual accounts.[8] On 23 March 2012, Endemol's debt was converted into shares by US private-equity firm Apollo Global Management.[9] On 3 April 2012, Mediaset sold its majority stake in Endemol to Apollo and Dutch asset manager Cyrte, and Endemol restructured the bulk of its debt. The current CEO is Just Spee.[10] On 15 May 2014, Apollo and 21st Century Fox announced a joint venture to combine 21st Century Fox's Shine Group and Apollo's Endemol and CORE Media Group.[11] The deal closed October 2014.[12]

Over the years Endemol has expanded its international presence either by starting up operations in new markets or by acquiring existing production companies. Most recently, in December 2013, Endemol became a shareholder in Israel's Channel 2 franchisee Reshet, following the acquisition in April of a controlling share in the Israeli independent producer Kuperman, which is now Endemol Israel.[13]

On 17 December 2014, Endemol merged with fellow Apollo Global Management subsidiary Core Media, producer of American Idol, and 21st Century Fox's Shine unit, with the resulting 'mega-indie' adopting the name "Endemol Shine Group", which was a 50:50 joint venture by both parent companies. The name took effect on 1 January 2015.[14] 21st Century Fox's predecessor company, Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation, had in 2011 bought Shine (founder and chairperson until the 2015 merger: Murdoch's daughter Elisabeth) for $673 million.[15]

Global presence

Endemol has the following operations around the world:

Endemol USA

Endemol USA is the United States production branch of Endemol based in Los Angeles, California. It has been in operation since 2000. The branch produces Endemol's popular worldwide formats for the major American TV networks, such as Fear Factor, Deal or No Deal and 1 Vs. 100 for NBC; Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Show Me the Money, The One: Making a Music Star, Set for Life, and Wipeout for ABC; Exposed for MTV; Big Brother and Kid Nation for CBS; Midnight Money Madness for TBS (under the moniker Lock and Key Productions) and most recently, a game show adaptation of 20Q for GSN. Their worst faring franchise by far is The One which was canceled after four episodes. Fear Factor was canceled after six seasons and was later revived for an additional season by NBC in 2011; a new version began airing on MTV in 2017. Another one of their shows, Big Brother has two seasons already out on DVD. While Big Brother has had the most international success to date, their most successful USA program could end up being either Deal or No Deal or Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Both programs are wildly popular and highly rated.

Endemol USA created Midnight Money Madness for cable's TBS network, in which viewers can call in to play games and win money prizes. It is based on Endemol's successful Participation TV format. On 13 October 2006, Endemol USA launched another game show for NBC, 1 vs. 100 with Bob Saget, and debuted as another ratings winner. And on 14 November 2006, ABC premiered Show Me the Money, with William Shatner as its host. Midnight Money Madness was canceled in October 2006 after 32 episodes, in which its successor, Take the Cake, premiered 9 July 2007, and Show Me the Money was canceled in December 2006 after only five episodes aired. A syndicated version of Deal or No Deal aired from 2008 to 2010 (the show was revived for CNBC in 2018), while Wipeout aired from 2008 to 2015 on ABC.In October 2008, Tokyo Broadcasting System filed a lawsuit against ABC (with a separate suit against Endemol pending) for claims that Wipeout copied elements from two of their popular shows, Takeshi's Castle (known as MXC in the USA) and Sasuke (better known in the US as Ninja Warrior).[16] Endemol USA also produces the Style Network hour-long reality series Jerseylicious, which debuted in 2010.

In June 2010, Endemol picked up the distribution rights to the TV Land sitcom "Hot in Cleveland", which it will distribute internationally. This marked the first time that Endemol has acquired an American-produced scripted series.[17] Other scripted properties that Endemol also owns rights to include Happily Divorced and The Exes, also airing on TV Land.

In 2011, Endemol expanded its US production portfolio to include more non-reality fare, starting with The Steve Harvey Show, distributed by NBCUniversal Television Distribution. The hour-long talk/variety program premiered on 10 September 2012 in syndication, and ran for five seasons before being replaced by a similarly-titled show that is produced by IMG. Another program, the mob-related crime drama Red Widow, aired on ABC as a mid-season replacement in the 2012-2013 television season.

Endemol USA Latino, which produces Endemol USA's successful shows in Spanish language as shown on the major Hispanic TV networks. Their first production was Vas o No Vas based on the popular Deal or No Deal, which aired on Telemundo. Unlike Endemol USA's headquarters in Los Angeles, Endemol USA Latino has headquarters located in Miami, Florida.

Endemol USA owns True Entertainment and majority stakes in the production companies Authentic Entertainment, 51 Minds Entertainment, and Original Media.

At the 2015 Digital Content NewFronts, Endemol Beyond announced new channels Looksy and Smasher.[18]

Authentic Entertainment

Authentic Entertainment, Inc is a Burbank-based reality television company that has produced television series that cover a wide range of subjects (e.g. Ace of Cakes, Weird Travels, Toddlers & Tiaras, All on the Line, Surprise Homecoming, Flipping Out, The Best Thing I Ever Ate, Auction Kings, Off Limits, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo), and most recently Cheer Perfection and Is Your Dog A Genius? and air on multiple networks, including Bravo, the Food Network, TLC, and the Discovery Channel. Authentic produces about 200 hours of programming a year. Endemol has been the majority owner of Authentic Entertainment since 2010.

Authentic Entertainment, currently subsidiary of Endemol, was founded in 2000 by Lauren Lexton and Tom Rogan, who were familiar with each other in their work as freelance reality production staffers.[19] It wasn't until 2010 that talk of Endemol owning a large stake in the production company became serious, as Endemol had approached them several years prior without success. The deal has since been finalized, and has been valued at US$60–70 million in unverified reports.[20]

Authentic has been named to Realscreen magazine's "Global 100" list for six consecutive years, starting in 2007,[21] and continuing in 2008,[22] 2009,[23] 2010,[24] 2011, and 2012.

Four of their shows' episodes have received CINE Golden Eagle awards: Ace of Cakes, Toddles & Tiaras, and The Best Thing I Ever Ate in 2010,[25][26] and Flipping Out in 2008.[27]

True Entertainment/Truly Original

Through its New York City subsidiary True Entertainment it produced The Real Housewives of Atlanta, Catch It Keep It, A Baby Story, Whose Wedding Is It Anyway?, Mystery Diagnosis, The Robert Verdi Show, The A-List: New York, Make Room for Multiples, and Fashion Queens.[28]

Earlier shows include Personal Conviction, Rebuilt: The Human Body Shop, A World Away, Band in a Bubble, Married Away, Mystery Medicine, Under One Roof, What's Your Sign Design?, HGTV Design Star, Unwrapping Macy's, Widow on the Hill, Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience, Go Ahead, Make My Dinner!, Town Haul, Guess Who's Coming To Decorate, B. Smith Style, The Good Buy Girls,[29] The Gastineau Girls, and Town Haul Jeffersonville.

True Entertainment was founded in 2000 and by Steven Weinstock and Glenda Hersh both of whom had previously worked for The New York Times subsidiary NYT Television. True was acquired by Endemol in 2003.[30]

In 2017, True Entertainment and sister company Original Media merged to form Truly Original.

51 Minds Entertainment

Endemol UK

Originally known as Broadcast Communications, Endemol UK is one of the UK's longest established production groups and won its first television commissions in the mid-1980s. It produces the main Endemol franchises such as Big Brother and Deal or No Deal. Endemol UK launched a comedy production firm called "Shiny Button Productions". Andy Brereton, James De Frond and Tom Davis, are the team behind the creation of the comedy centered production firm. The same team is responsible for BBC Three's breakout comedy hit “Murder in Successville ”.[31]

Endemol India

In January 2006, Endemol started producing programs with the Mohit Raina in different channels which are in Hindi and Malayalam from Mumbai, India. Among the company's channels were Mazhavil Manorama, Asianet, STAR Plus, STAR One, Ndtv Imagine, Zee TV and Colors (TV channel)

YearTV SeriesTV Channel
2006–presentBigg Boss Colors
2007–2008Funjabbi Chak DeSTAR One
2007–2008Champion Chaalbaaz No.1Sony Entertainment Television
2008The Great Indian Laughter ChallengeSTAR One
2008Jo Jeeta Wohi Super StarSTAR Plus
2008–2010Miley Jab Hum TumSTAR One
2008–presentKhatron Ke KhiladiColors
2008Chhote MiyanColors
2009Ladies SpecialZee TV
2009Raju Hazir HoImagine TV
2009–2011Sabki Laadli BeboSTAR Plus
2010–2011Geet - Hui Sabse ParayiSTAR One
2010-2011Deala No Deala Sun TV
2011–2012Beend Banoongaa Ghodi ChadhungaImagine TV
2011–2012DharampatniImagine TV
2012Jo Jeeta Wohi Super Star 2STAR Plus
2013–present Bigg Boss Kannada Colors Kannada
2014–present Dancing Star Colors Kannada
2014–present Super Minute Colors Kannada
2015–present Bigg Boss Bangla Colors Bangla
2015–presentSwim TeamChannel V
2015–presentThe Voice India&TV
2016–2017Minute To Win ItMazhavil Manorama
2016–2017Kuttikalodano KaliMazhavil Manorama
2017–presentStill StandingMazhavil Manorama
2017–presentBigg Boss TamilStar Vijay
2017–presentBigg Boss TeluguStar Maa
2018–presentBigg Boss MarathiColors Marathi
2018–presentBigg Boss MalayalamAsianet
2018–presentMTV Ace Of SpaceMTV

Endemol Australia

Endemol Australia (formerly "Endemol Southern Star") is an Australian production company which was previously a joint venture of Endemol and Southern Star Group. Endemol purchased Southern Star Group from Fairfax Media in January 2009.[32] It produces Endemol's popular worldwide formats for Australia, including Big Brother, Deal or No Deal, and Ready Steady Cook. It is based in Australia.


Endemol sued Brazilian channel SBT over what it says was a Big Brother copycat, and threatened to sue Russian Behind the Glass for the same reason.[33]

Endemol was sued by four Georgia women alleging that a text-message game featured on Deal or No Deal is a form of illegal gambling.[34]


Reality television


Late night/variety shows


Game shows

Children's shows

Live TV




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