IDT Entertainment has closed a $50 million credit facility with JPMorgan Chase Bank to fund productions for broadcast and homevideo and to acquire distribution rights for existing projects.
Money is expected to be used primarily by genre entertainment division New Arc Entertainment, which has a long list of live-action and animated projects in development with talent including Rob Zombie, Stephen J. Cannell, John Carpenter and Tobe Hooper.
Company has sold several projects to cablers Sci Fi and Showtime, and hopes to sell more broadcast rights and then distribute projects through its Anchor Bay homevideo shingle.
Funds also will be used by Anchor Bay to close major DVD distribution deals, as it recently did for TV series “Roseanne.”
“Now we have off-balance financing for our productions and can make producers more comfortable coming to IDT as a company with funds specifically earmarked for entertainment,” said IDT Entertainment topper Morris Berger.
Five-year deal allows IDT to draw on $25 million in additional funds. Berger also noted conglom’s entertainment divisions can draw cash from IDT corporate for projects that require more coin.
Telcom company IDT has been investing heavily in entertainment in the past few years, most heavily in the animation space. With strong homevid distrib and foreign sales units, it’s looking to beef up in content production and acquisitions.