Xinke New Materials, a Chinese metals firm, has acquired an 80% stake in the parent company of Oscar-winning production and sales firm Voltage Pictures.
Reuters reported that the Anhui-based copper processor this year set up a media investments arm Wotaiji International Media. Hong Kong-based Wotaiji is to buy the majority of Midnight Investments, the holding company for Voltage. The sellers are U.S.-based Leone Holdings and Minuit Holdings.
In a regulatory filing Xinke said that it would pay a minimum of $345 million for the stake, with the price possibly rising to $518 million. The deal is expected to close by the end of December.
Headed by Nicolas Chartier, Voltage was producer on both “The Dallas Buyers Club” and “The Hurt Locker.” The filing shows both Chartier and Jonathan Deckter as being required to provide current employment contracts. Chartier is also expected to deliver a non-compete agreement.
Xinke is listed on the Shanghai stock exchange and on Monday had a market capitalization of $1.15 billion (RMB7.79 billion.)
The deal continues the flow of Chinese corporate money into Hollywood studios and high profile U.S. independents. Other recent deals have included the Tang Media purchase of a majority stake in IM Global and Dalian Wanda’s $1 billion acquisition of Dick Clark Productions. The biggest this year was Wanda’s $3.5 billion purchase of Legendary Entertainment.
Metals trading has been a lucrative business sector in China as companies rode a commodities price boom. As those prices eased some firms sought to use their financial position to diversify into other areas.
Lawyers involved in the deal include Brian D. Kilb at Eisner & Jaffe for the Midnight vendors, and Ling Xiao at the Los Angeles-based Zhong Lun Law Firm for Wotaiji. Craig Flores, former Voltage president, brought the deal to Voltage.