John Fogelman’s FactoryMade Ventures has sold a minority stake to Japanese conglomerate Mitsui & Co.
Details of the transaction were not disclosed. The companies said the deal includes an agreement to “jointly create, incubate and fund content, intellectual property and new media businesses.”
Fogelman, a former top WMA agent, launched FactoryMade in 2011 ago as a means of developing new channels and content businesses. It has since launched Robert Rodriguez’s El Rey Network cabler and the wrestling league Lucha Underground.
“We are excited to be partnering with Mitsui as we look to accelerate the growth of FactoryMade’s IP portfolio,” said Fogelman. “This partnership strengthens our ability to continue mining local IP and re-imagining it in Hollywood.”
Deal with FactoryMade is another sign of Japanese investors’ renewed interest in U.S. media companies. Financial giant Softbank recently held takeover talks with DreamWorks Animation and it made a $250 million investment in Thomas Tull’s Legendary Pictures, and Softbank vowed to work with Legendary to fund new content development.
“By creating successful new media businesses in the U.S., we hope to build another bridge between America’s media industry and that of Japan, which are two leading markets in the world,” said Yasuyuki Uchida, g.m. of Mitsui’s Media Business Division.
In Japan, Mitsui’s holdings include investments in satellite and pay TV services and kidvid channels.