Spain’s film institute, the ICAA, and government backed film finance facilitators, Audiovisual SGR, are co-organising a finance conference to take place in Madrid on July 1 looking at how producers can access private funding for their film projects.

The Spanish film industry currently faces some huge problems, such as a reduction in TV investment in film, dangerously high levels of piracy which are destroying the distribution and exhibition markets, insufficient public funds compared with other European countries and too many small films made each year that rely almost solely on public subsidies and then fail to make a dent at the box office.

The government backed event on July 1 titled “A new look at the financing and investment of cinema in Spain” will not only confront these problems, but also assess how producers can access new forms of private capital from local finance institutions or through international co-productions, as well as credit facilities to help them make their films.

“Producers are becoming hungry for more sophisticated financing structures,” Ignasi Guardans, director general of the ICAA, tells ScreenDaily. “Normal approaches to film funding through subsidies and TV rights have changed, and producers are having to re-think the way they finance their films.”

The conference, which is being supported by Screen International, will also target financiers interested in investing in cinema, but who are perhaps understandably reticent about pumping funds into what is considered a risky industry. The idea is to show how the money can be invested and what benefits they can obtain.

“With the current state of the stock exchange in Spain, film is just as risky as any other industry, and hopefully investors will realize that by investing in more commercial films they can receive revenue from theatrical and new platform releases,” says Guardans. “Spain may have a debt crisis, but there is still money there to invest, and indeed there are institutions who are already investing in film, such as risk management companies and family run offices.”

The event is also being supported by the Spanish producers associations FAPAE and EGEDA, the Official Credit Institute of Spain, local banks Caja Madrid, Banesto and Caixa Penedes, and UK producers Future Films, among others.

Guest speakers include Fernando Bovaira of Spanish outfit Mod Producciones, Stephen Margolis of Future Films, Peter Aalbaek-Jensen of Zentropa and Joel Thibout of Back Up Films.

The event will be taking place at the CECA auditorium in Madrid, which is at 28 Calle Caballero de Gracia.