US producer-distributor TEAM Communications Group is a launching a $50m TV production fund entitled TEAM TV Fund following a pact with the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC).

TEAM, which is listed on Frankfurt's Neuer Markt and the US NASDAQ exchange, has put up $ 5m of its own capital for the fund. The company has secured a commitment of another $45m financing from CIBC.

According to the agreement with CIBC, TEAM TV Fund will be established as a 100% subsidiary of TEAM Communications. The cash will go to finance up to 50% of the production costs of TV projects with a total production volume of up to $125m.

Among the first projects to benefit are Final Jeopardy for ABC, Vampire High, Live Through This for MTV, Animal Planet's Call Of The Wild and Lawrence Bender's Anatomy Of A Hate Crime. Productions will only be greenlit once at least 50% of the production costs have been covered by presales.

"This financing possibility does not put pressure on our shareholders and at the same time guarantees our independence," TEAM chief executive officer Drew W Levin said.