Leading British support body the UK Film Council is to team with a private sector partner to raise new private investment through a dedicated Enterprise Investment Scheme, a tax-driven financing mechanism that will bankroll selected features alongside the council's National Lottery cash.

The scheme, which could pave the way for a dramatic boost in the council's already significant production investment of some £20m a year, will work with the council's £10m a year Premiere Fund for commercial films.

The council is today to invite tenders for a managing partner for the EIS fund from organisations able to raise the investment and start trading next April.

A council spokesperson said it had opted not to work with a financier under the Section 48 tax deferrals while the Government is reviewing the tax mechanism, which is due to expire in 2005.

The council is aiming for a partner with a successful track record in raising private funding and managing at least two EIS investment companies for the use in the film and television industry. The closing date for receipt of tenders will be October 24.