Aug 23, 2019

Hasbro agrees to buy Peppa Pig studio Entertainment One for $4 billion

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata

Peppa Pig characters. Photo: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images

Hasbro agreed to buy Entertainment One, the studio behind children's TV show "Peppa Pig," for around $4 billion.

Why it matters: This one could become a real muddy puddle. Hasbro's £5.60 per share represents a 26% premium to Thursday's closing price, but shares subsequently climbed even higher — with some investors and analysts expecting that a content company will try to top the toymaker.

  • Entertainment One snorted at a £1 billion takeover offer in 2016 from British broadcaster ITV.

The bottom line: Hasbro has long desired to own an entertainment company, but to date has settled for licensing popular IP. They did try to work out a deal with Dreamworks in 2014. The question now is if this deal is mostly about bringing a popular international brand in-house, or also about standing up a major TV and film production business.

Go deeper: Toymakers say Trump's China tariff delay "saved the holiday season"

Go deeper

Updated 32 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Esper catches White House off guard with opposition to military use, photo op

Defense Secretary Mark Esper said at a press briefing Wednesday that he does not support invoking the Insurrection Act, an 1807 law that permits the president to use active-duty troops on U.S. soil, in order to quell protests against racial injustice.

Why it matters: President Trump threatened this week to deploy military forces if state and local governments aren't able to squash violent protests. Axios reported on Wednesday that Trump is backing off the idea for now, but that he hasn't ruled it out.

Chinese coronavirus test maker agreed to build a Xinjiang gene bank

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

A leading Chinese gene sequencing and biomedical firm that said it would build a gene bank in Xinjiang is supplying coronavirus tests around the world.

Why it matters: U.S. officials are worried that widespread coronavirus testing may provide an opportunity for state-connected companies to compile massive DNA databases for research as well as genetics-based surveillance.

1 hour ago - World

Trump administration to ban Chinese airlines from flying to U.S.

An Air China aircraft landing in New York City in January 2020. Photo: Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The Department of Transportation announced Wednesday that Chinese passenger airlines will be banned from flying to the United States starting June 16.

Why it matters: Heated tensions between Washington and Beijing are now beginning to impact the airline industry, as the DOT has accused the Chinese government of preventing U.S. airlines from resuming flights to China after suspending them earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.