French sales, distribution and financing outfit Wild Bunch has raised $34m (Euros 25m) in equity and announced a $150m co-production and acquisition venture with US investment group Continental Entertainment Capital (CEC).

CEC is providing most of the new capital with additional support from capital risk fund Iris Capital, which is already a shareholder in Wild Bunch, and also by the founding partners of the company.

As Continental Films, Wild Bunch and CEC, will create the new acquisition and co-production structure with $150m (Euros 110m) to invest in films budgeted above $20m (Euros 15m.)

As with Virtual, all films acquired or co-produced by the new structure will be distributed and sold internationally by Wild Bunch.

No new staff will be added at this time.

'Thanks to this double reinforcement of its own funds and acquisition capabilities, Wild Bunch has the means necessary to pursue its objective of creating an independent and innovative European distribution network,' the company said ina statement.

'This transaction also makes way for a new sophisticated, media-specialised financial partner at the Wild Bunch table It is the first major investment by CEC. If it has come about primarily because of Wild Bunch's unique characteristics, the quality of its films, its continually increasing success since its creation or because of its strategic vision, it also reflects the specific interest that CEC has in the European market.'