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Relativity School, Sports Agency, Distribution Joint Venture Not Part of Bankruptcy

Relativity Media filed for bankruptcy Thursday, but it’s business as usual for Relativity School, Relativity Sports and the distribution and marketing joint venture the embattled studio owns with EuropaCorp.

The film and television company announced that it is putting itself up for auction, but those three entities will not be included in a sale. They are financially self-sufficient and have independent management structures, sources say.

Relativity laid off roughly a quarter of its 350-person staff on Wednesday, but the staffing cuts did not hit the distribution joint venture or the education and agency arms. EuropaCorp CEO Christophe Lambert told staffers at the distribution operation this week that there will be no layoffs.

Relativity owns a less than 30% stake in the sports management company and maintains a minority position in the school. Both companies maintain offices off-site.

The distribution joint venture is also untouched and fully funded, according to an individual with knowledge. EuropaCorp paid roughly $80 million in 2014 for a 50% stake in the company and pays for half of its operating expenses. Dubbed Relativity EuropaCorp Distribution (RED), the company is preparing to release “The Transporter: Refueled” on Sept. 4.

The school is a for-profit branch of Philadelphia’s Hussian School of Art, and offers degrees in film, acting, dance and graphic arts through its Los Angeles Center Studios campus. Relativity licensed its name to the school and also allowed students to work on its film and television productions. The school is planning to announce new entertainment company partners before the next semester begins. Other investors in the school include Colbeck Capital, one of Relativity’s major lenders.

The sports agency will also be unaffected by the filing, sources say. Its majority owners are Colbeck, Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa Companies and the agents themselves. Relativity Sports is the second largest sports agency and represents athletes including Miguel Cabrera, Dwight Howard and Amar’e Stoudemire. As part of its involvement, Relativity attempted to use the agency’s roster of athletes in its film, fashion and television businesses.

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