Private equity fundMain Capital has paid Euros 3.5m to acquire a substantial minority interest inNetherlands based distributor Dutch Filmworks (DFW).
During the past seven years, the indie distributor hasbecome a leading distributor in the Benelux region. The company has built up astrong track record in DVD and is now increasingly focused on exploiting itsfilm rights in television and theatre.
Dutch Filmworks general director WillemPruijssers said the company wants to spread its wings with the Euros 3.5minvestment. "We especially want to expand our theatrical releases", he said."With the new equity investment, we are well positioned to make acquisitionsthat were previously beyond our reach."
Dutch Filmworks distributes around 140 titles a year,although only 15 of them are theatrical.
The company has specialized in Asian cinema, but wantsto broaden into different genres. In 2005, DFW will release films such as theSarah Michelle Gellar starring The Grudge,Andrew Niccol's Lord Of War and PeterHyam's Sound Of Thunder.
Pruijssers denies to be planning any takeovers inthe turbulent Dutch distribution market. "Nevertheless, we will take any offerin consideration", he said. "The growth of the market is slowing down, so youhave to act to survive. It is inevitable that some of the smaller distributorswill disappear in the near future."
Investor Main Capital expects that Dutch Filmworks willbe able to capitalise on the expected consolidation in the film distributionindustry. "The company operates in a growing market with a very strongmanagement team", explained founder Lars van 't Hoenderdaal.