New Regency is in the market for new money. JP Morgan and Bank of America are out to lenders to syndicate a $500 million revolving credit line for the Fox-based shingle, according to sources with knowledge of the deal.
The move is not surprising, given that Regency’s current $500 million credit line through JP Morgan is set to expire next year. New Regency typically goes into the market to repackage funds a year before its existing deals run out. JP Morgan will act as the lead bank with Bank of America as co-lead. Both banks have been in the market for a week or two, with observers expecting the syndication to close over the next two months.
Timing is good for Regency: The 20th Century Fox-based banner will be able to take advantage of a more liquid market for entertainment coin than has existed over the past couple of years as the recession and credit crunch played out. Regency will also benefit from an increased demand from lenders to invest in solid assets, as it has a library of films, a proven track record and a partnership with Fox in place. In January, New Regency and Fox Filmed Entertainment extended their partnership through 2022, which coincided with New Regency’s decision to fully finance a larger number of films for distribution by the studio.
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Recent New Regency credits include “Monte Carlo,” which opened July 1. Fox will release “What’s Your Number?” in September, followed by “In Time” in October and “Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked” in December. Production shingle was recently in talks to co-finance “Luna,” with Doug Liman attached to direct, with Paramount. Summit will also unspool New Regency’s “The Darkest Hour” in December.
Bank of America and JP Morgan have also been active in the entertainment lending market. Both banks recently worked on Legendary’s $600 million-plus credit line, which Variety first reported in April.
New Regency and JPMorgan declined to comment. Bank of America could not be reached. Fox declined to comment.