Sky Studios takes stake in natural history producer True to Nature

Mark Johnson's picture
by Mark Johnson

Sky Studios has announced its acquisition of a 24.9% stake in True to Nature, one of the UK’s fastest growing producers of high-end natural history programmes.

Bristol-based TTN was founded in 2016 by former Head of the BBC Natural History Unit, Dr Wendy Darke. 

Despite only being three years old, TTN is already delivering a number of premium factual series this year, including EXPEDITION with Steve Backshall, a 10-part series currently airing on Dave (UKTV), as well as Undiscovered Worlds with Steve Backshall on the BBC. 

Other productions this year include Planet of Volcanoes on PBS, ZDF and ARTE as well as a five-part series, Gangs of Lemur Island for Love Nature and the Smithsonian Channel.

Following completion of the deal, Darke’s highly recognised editorial and production team will be further strengthened and expanded, enabling TTN to tell even more of nature’s most compelling stories, Sky said.

First investment 

The investment is the first to be made by Sky Studios, Sky’s new Europe-wide development and production capability, the company said. 

With the backing of new owners Comcast, Sky’s investment in original content will more than double over the next five years across a range of genres.

“The content coming out of True to Nature has blown us away”, Gary Davey, CEO, Sky Studios, said. 

“Viewers have never been more interested in the natural world than they are today and all of us at Sky Studios can’t wait to work with Wendy and the team to see what we can create together."

Wendy Darke, Founder & CEO, True to Nature, said: "At True to Nature, the natural world is at the heart of everything we do. 

“We want to use storytelling to build lifelong relationships between viewers and the natural world. 

“Our new and exciting creative partnership with Sky Studios feels like the natural next step to continue to realise our ambitions for True To Nature and we’re looking forward to making our dreams, reality.”

Sky Studios will provide TTN with the support needed to accelerate its growth and become a leading international developer of wildlife shows. 

Whilst retaining full creative independence, TTN will also work closely with Sky Studios to develop content for distribution on the Sky platforms.

See all the winners from the Prolific London Awards

The inaugural event championed creative brilliance from across the capital