MediaInvest set to support European producers
- CANNES 2022: The European Commission has announced a new fund destined for audiovisual producers, endowed with a budget of €400 million for the period 2022-2027
The European Film Forum, which is held at the main audiovisual festivals every year, welcomed Thierry Breton to the 75th Cannes Film Festival on 20 May. The European Commissioner for the Internal Market announced the creation of a new investment fund encompassing the 27 member states.
Christened MediaInvest, the fund will focus on the equity needs of production companies in the fields of audiovisual, film and television. An amount of €400 million will thus be made available, not in the form of grants, but as leverage in order to strengthen the equity of independent companies.
Breton stressed that the objective of this new tool was to “grow private investment in these firms, while also facilitating the integration of new production technologies”, but also “to allow producers to retain ownership of the intellectual property of their works and of their entire catalogue”.
The new measures come under the auspices of the European Investment Fund (EIF) in partnership with the European Central Bank. The EIF covers a huge variety of sectors in the European industry, including media and culture. However, until now, it has remained little known among audiovisual producers.
Laurent Braun, head of Business Development at the EIF, also made the journey to Cannes to explain how MediaInvest works: supporting the catalogues of businesses or films in order to share risk, and appealing to professional fund managers and private financial investors.
European producers already have several support tools available to them. One such tool are grants geared towards co-productions via the Eurimages fund, falling under the auspices of the Council of Europe (48 countries): having recently been revamped, its annual budget remains fairly modest, standing at circa €27.5 million. As for the financial aid provided by the Creative Europe – MEDIA fund (€1.4 billion during the period 2021-2027), this is not often aimed at production companies without a shareholder relationship. MediaInvest will therefore be the only European public fund to invest in equity-based companies.
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(Translated from French)
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