Spanish bizzers renew credit pact

Deal raises ICO's three-year facility from $67.5 mil

Spain’s Official Credit Institute (ICO), pubcaster RTVE and producers org Fapae have renewed a long-standing accord that will allow Spanish producers to draw up to E75 million ($92.1 million) in credit financing during 2006-08.

Producers who sign pre-buy, screenplay-stage contracts on films with RTVE can continue to discount the contracts at ICO in the form of low-interest loans.

Pact raises ICO’s three-year facility from $67.5 million during 2003-05.

It includes animated series as well as features, shorts, TV movies, docus and series of cultural values.

Increased credit line reflects hiked demand from Spain’s film production sector. ICO lent $58.9 million toward the production of 93 pics from 2003-05, nearly exhausting its facility.

The ICO provides valuable upfront money for movie production in Spain, where film financing is heavily backloaded.

Despite signing pre-buy contracts, RTVE pays most money for a Spanish film on its first RTVE run some three years after it shoots.

But ICO has no comparable discount deals with Spain’s main commercial broadcasters, Antena 3 and Telecinco, or with paybox Canal Plus.

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