Abry sells payroll specialist for undisclosed price

An investor group led by ZM Capital has acquired payroll specialist Cast & Crew Entertainment Services for an undisclosed price from Abry Partners.

Burbank-based Cast & Crew said the deal with ZM Capital, ZelnickMedia’s private equity fund, closed on Dec. 24. Services include entertainment payroll, production accounting software, procurement and purchasing services, residual payments, labor relations, production incentives and workers compensation insurance with field operations in New York, Albuquerque, Atlanta, Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Detroit, Philadelphia and Wilmington and Canadian offices in Toronto and Vancouver.

Cast & Crew’s management team will remain in place. “The ZelnickMedia team values and supports Cast & Crew’s mission to provide the market-leading service and best-in-class products that have defined us for the last 37 years,” said Eric Belcher, persident and CEO of Cast & Crew.

The announcement noted that Strauss Zelnick, managing partner of ZelnickMedia, has a long-standing relationship with Belcher, dating back to when they worked together at Fox where Zelnick was president and chief operating officer.

“Cast & Crew has an exceptionally strong and experienced management team, industry-leading service and software, a culture characterized by entrepreneurial spirit and accelerating momentum — all critical to our investment decision,” Zelnick said.

ZelnickMedia said the deal fits within its strategy of investing in “leading providers of mission-critical services within its sector focus.” Co-investors included VSS Structured Capital Fund and Ares Capital Corp., with Ares also providing senior debt financing.

Lazard Middle Market acted as financial advisor and Kirkland & Ellis LLP acted as legal advisor to Cast & Crew. Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP acted as legal advisor to ZM Capital.

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