SGF To Contribute Up To $140 Million (U.S.) Out Of Up To $400 Million
(U.S.) Television And Motion Picture Financing Slate Over Next Four Years
Next Punisher Film Set For Production in Montréal In October under New
SANTA MONICA, CA, Vancouver and MONTREAL Aug. 1 /CNW Telbec/ - As part of
the continued growth of its television and motion picture production
businesses, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), the leading independent filmed
entertainment studio, today announced a four-year, $400 million filmed
entertainment slate financing agreement with Société générale de financement
du Québec (SGF), the provincial government's investment arm that has a
$2 billion investment portfolio.
As part of its continued effort to promote production of foreign films
and television series in Québec, SGF will finance up to 35% of production
costs of television and feature film productions shot in Québec for a
four-year period for an aggregate investment of up to $140 million. The
transaction will encompass a broad range of future Lionsgate television and
feature film productions in the Province of Québec, including the planned
October 2007 production of Lionsgate's next Punisher film, starring Ray
Stevenson (from HBO's hit series Rome) and directed by Oscar (R) nominee Lexi
"We are delighted to partner with SGF in the financing of our growth,"
said Lionsgate Co-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jon Feltheimer. "This
transaction reflects our commitment to form innovative and cost-effective
alliances to continue expanding our television and motion picture production."
"SGF is pleased to participate with Lionsgate in this exciting venture
which will have a significant impact on Québec's filmed entertainment
industry," said SGF's Chairman of the Board, President and General Manager,
Pierre Shedleur. "We anticipate the creation of more than 6,700 full-time
equivalent jobs, generating total wages of $270 million".
Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade,
Raymond Bachand, saluted this key investment. "This investment will be highly
beneficial for Québec's filmed entertainment industry. Foreign productions are
vital for the growth of this sector and for the continued development of the
industry's workforce in Québec."
Lionsgate noted that the agreement maintains its historic commitment to
major production initiatives in Canada. Under the arrangement, SGF will
finance up to 35% of the budgeted costs of television and feature film
productions shot in Québec. The announcement follows Lionsgate's May 2007
formation of a $400 million, 23-picture theatrical slate financing agreement
led by Goldman, Sachs & Co., JP Morgan Chase and Jefferies & Co. as well as
SGF's investment in the $212,5 million financing of Joel Silver's Dark Castle
slate in 2006.
On the Lionsgate side, the deal was orchestrated by Lionsgate General
Counsel and EVP Corporate Operations Wayne Levin, EVP Structured Finance
Mark Manuel, and the law firms Heenan Blaikie LLP and O'Melveny & Myers LLP.
The deal was referred to Lionsgate through John Burke of the law and lobbying
firm Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP.
On the SGF side, the deal was driven by SGF's Legal Counsel Donna
Benedek, and Senior Vice-President, Investments Support and Management,
Yves Bourque. Joey Mastrogiuseppe of the law firm Fraser Milner Casgrain, LLP
and Kaye Scholer, LLP advised SGF.
Lionsgate is the leading independent filmed entertainment studio, winning
the 2006 Best Picture Academy Award (R) for Crash, and the Company is a
premier producer and distributor of motion pictures, home entertainment,
family entertainment, television programming and video-on-demand content. Its
prestigious and prolific library of more than 11,000 motion picture titles and
television episodes is a valuable source of recurring revenue and a foundation
for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate brand is
synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the
Société générale de financement du Québec (www.sgfqc.com), an industrial
and financial holding company, has a mission to carry out economic development
projects, with emphasis on the industrial sector, in co-operation with
partners and on standard profitability conditions, in accordance with the
economic development policy of the Québec government.
Communications and Media Relations
Société générale de financement du Québec
Peter D. Wilkes
Senior Vice President Investor Relations & Executive Communications
Coordinator, Investor Relations
For further information:
For further information: Marie-Claude Lemieux, Senior Adviser,
Communications and Media Relations, Société générale de financement du Québec,
(514) 876-9368, firstname.lastname@example.org; Peter D. Wilkes, Senior Vice President
Investor Relations & Executive Communications, Lionsgate, (310) 255-3726,
email@example.com; Kelli Easterling, Coordinator, Investor Relations,
Lionsgate, (310) 255-4929, firstname.lastname@example.org