Great Point aims at £200m for streaming content

The company was involved in financing disaster movie Greenland, starring Gerard Butler 

By Nia Daniels 17 Nov 2020

Great Point aims at £200m for streaming content
Gerard Butler in Greenland

London-listed investment trust Great Point is aiming to raise £200m in London to finance productions for streaming services including Netflix, Apple, Amazon and the BBC. 

The Great Point Entertainment Income Trust would be the first to float in London with a remit to bankroll content made for broadcasters and streaming services. Jim Reeve, Great Point chief executive, said he aims to raise £200m-£250m and eventually up to £1bn, despite doubts over investor appetite for new offerings.

A typical deal would offer £10m-£15m to productions with budgets in the £40m range. The main risks would be in delivery, either in the event of a filmmaker being unable to complete a project on time or on budget, or the buyer being unable to pay for the film or TV show.
Reeve aims to offer institutional investors a net yield of about 6%. “The space we’re in is really a flexible financier for content creators to be able to get their projects financed efficiently, quickly and attractively in terms of cost,” he said. “What we’re not is a sort of equity punter, taking a bet on [a movie] and hoping for the best.”
Great Point, which was involved in financing disaster movie Greenland (pictured), is one of a number of groups aiming to tap investor interest in media content. The company recently confirmed that it has leased Seren Stiwdios (formerly Pinewood Wales) from the Welsh Government.  

Reeve said there are opportunities from the limited number of banks active in the sector, looming changes to tax relief schemes, and the sharp rise in demand for content.
His fund will secure loans to filmmakers against tax rebates, which is a significant proportion of independent production costs, or through existing delivery agreements with cinema distributors or media groups such as Netflix, Apple, and the BBC.

Non-executive directors of the fund include Tamara Howe, a former executive at Vice TV and the BBC; Stephanie Mills, the former group financial controller of Channel 4; and Askandar Samad, a veteran media finance lawyer.

Photo by Daniel McFadden/Courtesy of STXfilms - © Motion Picture Artwork ©2019 STX Financing, LLC. Image courtesy

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