Responding to speculation in the German press, the investor group led by Michael and Rainer Koelmel has announced that contracts were signed on October 2 for the brothers to take over the core assets of the Kinowelt Medien Group.

According to a statement, Leipzig-based Neue Spielfilm Vertriebs- und Marketing GmbH - to be known as Kinowelt Vertriebs- und Marketing GmbH - will concentrate on the core activities of license trading, theatrical distribution and home entertainment, acquiring the film rights holdings from Kinowelt Lizenzverwertungs GmbH and subsidiary companies from within the Kinowelt Medien Group such as Kinowelt Home Entertainment, Kinowelt Filmverleih, Kinowelt International and Arthaus Filmverleih.

Neue Spielfilm Vertriebs- und Marketing GmbH and the new group's subsidiaries are to be jointly managed by brothers Michael and Rainer Koelmel and Bertil le Claire. In addition, Kinowelt Home Entertainment will be managed by Ralph Koch, until now managing director of Kinowelt International, and Michael Koelmel once the takeover has been completed.

According to the owners of the streamlined Kinowelt, the release of new films by Kinowelt Filmverleih will be handled in future in collaboration with Peter Heinzemann's Solo Film, while the Jugendfilm and Arthaus theatrical arms will be reactivated to handle releases from Kinowelt's back catalogue. World sales operations will continue as before through Kinowelt World Sales (mainstream titles) and Futura Weltvertrieb (films from the Filmverlag der Autoren library).