A new private $800 Million Chinese media fund targets Hollywood

8 February 2012 0 h 36 min Comments Off

Harvest Alternative Investment Group (a subsidiary of Harvest Fund Management) and Sun Redrock Investment Group (founded by Bruno Wu, already one of China’s most successful media entrepreneurs) have formed one of China’s largest media funds – the Harvest Seven Stars Media Fund, with an initial fund raising target of $800 million capital. Their target: Hollywood.

The new  $800 million-fueled private equity fund intends to coproduce or cofinance studio movies and to attract the Hollywood majors and tentpole productions as future investment partners

It aims to invest in studio projects with an eye to bringing them to the wider Asian market and mainland China as well as invest in existing entertainment companies, provide backing for filmmakers and build a distribution system in China and elsewhere

According to several sources, Redrock Investment Group, founded by Chinese media entrepreneur Bruno Wu (picture), and Harvest are currently discussing deals with “major filmmakers and filmed entertainment providers” to invest in English and Chinese language content both for Asia and with the global box office potential.

During a video conference call with HK and London, Wu said he expects to be able to detail deals with Hollywood producers and filmmakers “within the next 30 days or so.”

“One of the main factors in investing in Hollywood output will be that the projects are roundly acceptable to Asian audiences,” Wu said. He added “the new partnership emphasizes our confidence in the strength and potential of the Chinese media industry and the wealth of talent within it. We look forward to cultivating this new joint venture and seeing it grow into one of the world’s leading media funds.” Harvest Alternative Investment Group’s Lindsay Wright declared: “The addition of this partnership to the Harvest Alternative Investment Group further supports our goal of developing a leading alternative product platform in China and globally. We have tremendous confidence in the potential of the Chinese media industry”

According to the presse announcement, the fund will operate “in three distinct areas

- Mergers and Acquisitions: the Fund will identify and take positions in niche dominant companies on a world-wide basis, enabling their consolidation and growth, particularly in the Chinese and Asian markets.
- Operations: the Fund will build a comprehensive distribution and marketing platform in all media across China and beyond, initially bringing the world’s best brands and entertainment to the Chinese and Asian consumer.
- Content: through direct relationships with major filmmakers and filmed entertainment providers, whether as equity stake holders or by provision of operating capital, the Fund will deliver the essential critical mass to its platforms”.

“The team is focused on collaborating with today’s leading filmmakers to develop both English and Chinese language content that is simultaneously Asia focused but also appeals to the world-wide market – crossing borders, cultures and generations”.

The fund aims to make its first investments in May this year. The new fund’s initial pool of capital will probably be expanded in the near future.

CAA is advising the fund via its Beijing office with several deals with producers nearing completion.

About the 2 partners:

Both partners have over 70 years of experience in the Chinese media and finance sectors

Harvest Alternative Investment Group is the alternative investment arm of Harvest Fund Management. Harvest Fund Management was founded in March 1999 as one of the first 10 fund management institutions authorized by the Chinese government as part of its strategy to open up and develop its financial sector.

With more than $ 35 bn of AuM the Harvest Group is currently the second largest and largest sino JV asset management company in China. Its shareholders include Deutsche Asset Management a subsidiary of Deutsche Bank AG(30%), China Credit Trust (40%) and Lixin Investments (30%).

Sun Redrock Investment Group was founded on Sun Media Group created by Dr. Bruno Wu and his wife Ms. Yang Lan in 1999. After only ten years, Sun Media has become one of the leading private media, marketing and investment companies in mainland China. The company operates five major segments under separate brands: Sun Media Group, Redrock Capital, Sun Enterprises Group, Sun Publishing Group and Sun Culture Foundation, a charitable foundation which promotes philanthropy and corporate social responsibility in China.

One month ago,  a consortium, led by Bruno Wu along with Harvest Global Investment and Pacific Alliance Group, was rumoured to eye a big target after holding preliminary talks with Summit ahead of its acquisition by Lionsgate. Companies thought to be in the consortium’s sights included Lionsgate and Miramax.

SOURCES: Companies, THR, deadline.com (6/02/12)


. Hollywood to Be Wooed by $800 Million Chinese Media Fund
The Hollywood Reporter   06/02/12

. Harvest, Sun Redrock launch $800m fund to invest in Asian and Western companies and films
screendaily.com  06/02/12

. Chinese create $ 800 mn fund for investment in Hollywood

Indiantelevision.com  7 /02/12

. Wu unveils $800 million media fund
china.org.cn  7/02/12

. Chinese Fund to Back Films in U.S., China
WSJ  8/02/12

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