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Candle Media, a new media rollup company backed by Blackstone and led by former Disney executives Tom Staggs and Kevin Mayer, has acquired Faraway Road Productions, the content studio behind Fauda.

Why it matters: It's the latest production studio to be snapped up by the pair. They are looking to create a global media company via rollup brands that they can one day take public, per The Information.

Details: The deal will help Faraway scale globally, per a statement from Faraway Co-CEO’s Lior Raz & Avi Issacharoff.

  • Although deal terms weren't disclosed, Deadline reported last year that the deal was worth less than $50 million in December.
  • In a statement announcing the deal, Blackstone executives Joe Baratta and David Kestnbaum said "content creation is one of our highest-conviction investment themes, and we believe that elite talent like the Faraway Road team is exceptionally well positioned to thrive in today’s increasingly global, digital media environment.”

The big picture: Staggs and Mayer are on a buying spree. Last week, Candle bought a minority stake in Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith’s entertainment company, Westbrook Inc.

  • In November, it acquired Moonbug Entertainment, a UK-based digital content company that's home to the YouTube streaming hit "Cocomelon," reportedly for $3 billion.
  • It bought Reese Witherspoon’s production company Hello Sunshine for $900 million in August.
  • The Information reported last week that Blackstone has so far contributed just under $2 billion in cash to Candle Media and that since last summer, Candle has used that money along with equity and debt to make "around $4 billion worth of acquisitions."

Go deeper

Jan 13, 2022 - Economy & Business

Telemundo launches bilingual content destination for Peacock

NBCUniversal Telemundo Enterprises

Telemundo on Thursday said it is launching "TPlus," a content hub on Peacock that caters to both Spanish and English speakers.

Why it matters: "We hope this will help Peacock become the premier home for Hispanic content in the U.S.," said Romina Rosado, executive vice president and general manager of Hispanic Streaming.

Scoop: Stephanie Ruhle to replace Brian Williams on MSNBC

Photo: Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images

MSNBC will soon announce plans to move morning anchor Stephanie Ruhle to the 11 pm ET hour that Brian Williams turned into an elite destination, two sources familiar with the move tell Axios.

Details: The 9 am ET hour, currently hosted by Ruhle, will become part of MSNBC's flagship morning show, "Morning Joe," which currently runs from 6 am to 9 am ET.

Oath Keepers leader denied bail on Capitol riot sedition charge

Oath Keepers co-founder Elmer Stewart Rhodes. Photo: Susan Walsh/AP

A federal judge ordered Oath Keepers leader Stewart Rhodes to remain jailed Wednesday until trial on charges stemming from the Capitol riot.

Why it matters: The judge said the most prominent far-right figure charged in the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection had access to weapons and his alleged "continued advocacy for violence against the federal government" gave credence to prosecutors' view that, if released, Rhodes could endanger others.