Asian Trio Launch Fund To Break Into China Market

Dragon Tiger fund set to expand to $100 million

HONG KONG – A trio of Asian companies has launched a film and TV production investment fund and committed to working together to break in to the China market.

Hong Kong’s Media Asia, South Korean music and talent management giant SM Entertainment and Taiwan cable TV network operator Kbro signed the deal Wednesday in the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing.

Initial capital for the Dragon Tiger fund is some $20 million, but is expected to increase to $100 million. SM and Media Asia are designated as co-managers, and Fubon, a diversified financial group that is Kbro’s parent, is named as co-founder.

The fund will invest jointly in film and TV productions, that are either made in China, or are specifically targeted at Chinese-language audiences.

The deal strengthens the connections between Media Asia and Fubon. In February this year Fubon and Kbro bought a 14% stake in Hong Stock Exchange-listed Media Asia. That puts it’s the Taiwanese pair as junior partners to Hong Hong property tycoon Peter Lam and a fund controlled by billionaire Alibaba boss Jack Ma. Media Asia CEO, Jeffrey Soong is also a former advisor to Fubon.

Since his arrival at Media Asia two years ago, Soong has aimed to create discreet slates of films that can be securitized and packaged for investors.

In addition to the production deal struck Wednesday, Media Asia will serve as the exclusive Chinese agent for SM’s talent. These include, including the bands Super Junior, f(x) and EXO.

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