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FilmNation closes $50m financing

The investment follows last year’s mighty 2012 when films licensed by the New York-based company generated $420m at the international box office.

The $50m in extra capital comes in the form of an equity-backed, revolving multi-bank credit facility with Bank Of America Merrill Lynch and Union Bank.

The infusion will provide FilmNation, which handles international sales on Cannes official selections All Is Lost, The Bling Ring and Nebraska, with the means to make a bigger push into production led by Aaron Ryder and provide funding for more acquisitions.

The deal was facilitated by FilmNation’s long relationship with Bank Of America’s Brian Stearns, Daniel Timmons and Sharad Bhatt as well as Union Bank’s Bryan LaCour, Anthony Beaudoin and Jason Feuerstein.

FilmNation recently acquired the majority of worldwide rights to David Michôd’s The Rover, starring Guy Pearce and Robert Pattinson and is co-financing Nic Mathieu’s Story Of Your Life with Lava Bear Films.

“As FilmNation evolves, we are committing a significant amount of our resources to content investment, and Bank Of America and Union Bank’s support allows us to do that in an even greater way,” said FilmNation CEO Glen Basner [pictured]. “This facility will further enable FilmNation to help filmmakers move their films from script to screen. While we are thrilled with the expeditious growth we have had in our short history, this facility and the investments we will make utilising it are all about building a company for the long term.”

“FilmNation represents the next generation of top content creators,” said Brian Stearns, co-head of Bank Of America Merrill Lynch’s entertainment industries group based in Los Angeles. “We are pleased to have had the opportunity to arrange this innovative financing and look forward to doing even more with FilmNation.”

“Union Bank is proud to have supported FilmNation over the past four years and watched Glen and his team successfully implement the business plan,” said Bryan LaCour, manager of Union Bank’s entertainment finance unit. “This financing will provide FilmNation with the necessary resources to continue its growth strategy and expand its already proven content creation platform.”

“FilmNation’s performance over the past five years has been exemplary, and we look forward to the new financing enabling us to continue to grow this platform in many ways including additional film production,” said FilmNation backer Steve Samuels.

The revolving facility was negotiated by FilmNation Entertainment COO Milan Popelka and evp of business and legal affairs Alison Cohen.

The deal is expected to close within the next 30 days.

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