Company set to boost production and film financing activities under new ownership.
Paris-based Bac Films has been acquired by producer David Grumbach, backed by a consortium of French and European investors.
The independent distributor and sales outfit was previously a subsidiary of publicly traded company BAC Majestic, which is majority controlled by animation house Millimages.
Under the deal, Grumbach, who already runs production companies Juliette Films and Jaya Productions, will become CEO.
Eric Chinchon, a Luxembourg-based business structuring and financing specialist, will act as CFO.
Mathieu Robinet will remain in place as BAC’s managing director, overseeing the core activities of acquisition and theatrical, TV, DVD and VOD distribution, international sales and production.
There will be no changes to the current distribution and sales teams.
It will be business as usual for the international sales chief Gilles Sousa and his team at the AFM this year. Sousa has spearheaded the expansion of the sales line-up since his arrival in 2011. Recent pictures on the slate Human Capital, The Strange Colour of Your Body’s Tears, The Quiet Roar and Ardor.
In a statement announcing the acquisition of the company, Grumbach said he intended to grow the company in the direction of “a full service European mini major capable of intervening in the entire process of a film’s creation.”
To that end, BAC will board international projects at an earlier stage and have a strong presence throughout development, financing, production and distribution.
The statement continued: “David Grumbach is enthusiastic about combining BAC’s team expertise with his experience in international production and financing. He intends to maintain the same proactive, cooperative approach that has worked for him as a producer as BAC Films increases the scope of its activities. Further details will be announced about BAC’s immediate plans in the coming months.”
Grumbach’s recent co-production credits include Ari Folman’s The Congress and Sylvie Testud’s Another Woman’s Life. Upcoming productions include Rob and Ronan Burke’s Standby.
French-born Grumbach started out as a production manager in Luxembourg, before working as a producer for Paul Thiltges Distributions.
His consortium-backed acquisition of Bac Films comes six years after its founder Jean Labadie was ousted as managing director of the company by the majority shareholder Millimages.
Labadie originally created Bac in 1986, floating the company in 2000 under the Bac Majestic banner. Animation house Millimages took over as the majority shareholder in 2004, after the company over-diversified and hit financial problems.
Under the terms of today’s deal, the BAC Majestic group entirely cedes BAC Films Distribution, the BAC brands and the exclusive right to sell the BAC back catalogue.
Bac Films Distribution currently controls a 0.45% stake in the French market.
Recent and upcoming releases include Oggy and the Cockroaches, Northwest and Human Capital.