Patrick Whitesell to Launch Media Company With $250M From Silver Lake

Author: Editors Desk Source: THR (The Hollywood Reporter)
April 3, 2024 at 10:10
Getty Images / Patrick Whitesell
Getty Images / Patrick Whitesell

Whitesell is expected to continue with WME, playing a central in the company as it goes private.

Silver Lake, the private equity firm that is planning to take WME owner Endeavor private, is also aiming to get further into business with Endeavor co-founder Patrick Whitesell.

According to Whitesell’s new employment agreement, which was filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission in conjunction with the take-private, Silver Lake is committing $250 million in seed money for a new media company to be led by the WME chairman.

“Activities of the Media Company will include (a) investing in and providing services to companies in the entertainment, media and sports industries; (b) developing, producing, financing and exploiting film, television and digital audio visual content; (c) talent management; and (d) consulting with other entertainment companies,” per the filing. The agreement also says that Whitesell will be appointed to the (soon-to-be private) Endeavor board and will continue to play a central in the company, and continuing to work with the agency in its new, private structure.

A veteran talent agent who previously led CAA’s motion picture talent department, Whitesell joined Endeavor in 2001, where he and CEO Ari Emanuel transformed the agency by merging it with William Morris to create WME in 2009.

WME would go on to acquire firms like IMG and the UFC, expanding beyond talent representation.

Endeavor went public in 2001, seeking to continue its expansion and M&A. The market, however, never quite valued the company at what executives there felt it was worth, leading to Silver Lake’s take-private offer, which was officially signed on Tuesday.

Since going public, Endeavor also spun out its UFC business and merged it with the WWE to create TKO Group Holdings, a public company that will continue to be traded.

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