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Federation Entertainment, Anton Strike Slate Financing Deal

Arrangement sees Anton invest across Federation’s premium drama series slate

Paris- and Los Angeles-based Federation Entertainment has struck an co-financing deal with Anton that will see the London-based investment company taking equity positions on Federation’s burgeoning portfolio of foreign and English-language drama series.

The multi-year slate investment deal is in the spirit of the $190 million partnership from the Drama Investment Partnership announced last year by BBC Worldwide and Anton, or indeed of Anton’s former slate-financing deals on Studiocanal movies.

On the distribution side, Anton will co-fund Federation’s

Paris- and Los Angeles-based Federation Entertainment has struck an exclusive multi-year co-financing deal with Anton that will see the London-based investment company taking equity positions on Federation’s burgeoning portfolio of foreign and English-language drama series.

The multi-year slate investment deal is in the spirit of the $190 million partnership from the Drama Investment Partnership announced last year by BBC Worldwide and Anton, or indeed of Anton’s former slate-financing deals on Studiocanal movies.

The production value for the Federation-Anton co-financed slate is expected to be well in excess of $100m.

On the distribution side, Anton will co-fund Federation’s acquisitions, in live-action fiction and in animation, for international or French series, shot in English, French or in other languages. Regarding production, Anton will strengthen Federation’s production capacity, by having the option to co-finance its productions.

Launched by Pascal Breton in 2014, Federation Entertainment hit the ground running announcing immediately an order from Netflix for France’s first Netflix original series, “Marseille.”

The deal kicks in with “Don’t Leave Me,” an Italian thriller co-created by the writers of “Gomorra.” Anton’s investment comes, however, as Federation, having backed notable foreign-language series such as Israel’s “Hostages” and Canal Plus’ “The Bureau,” is driving ever-more into English-language drama series production.

At Lille’s Series Mania festival earlier this month, Federation unveiled it is teaming with U.K. TV executives Donna Wiffen and Paul Marquess to create Long Story TV, a European drama series production entity.

“Slate financing lowers risk for the investor and allows Federation to double its production volume,” Breton said. He added that Federation had some 160 projects in development, “About half of these could happen over the next three-to-four years and obviously you need money [to produce them].”

Giving Federation the ability to tap investment automatically up to a certain Anton commitment, the deal will also allow Federation to move quicker on IP ownership or talent  relationships than many competitors, Breton added.

“Federation Entertainment is continental Europe-based, very strong in local language, and in the business of attracting independent talent to secure big projects, in competition with big platforms and studios. It is also expanding into English-language. It has huge growth potential, ” said Anton CEO Sébastien Raybaud, adding that the deal was “complementary” to Anton’s BBC Worldwide arrangement.

The Federation-Anton slate investment deal announcement comes just days after Anton, in a new strategic move, unveiled at the Cannes Film Festival its move into fully financing and selling select family entertainment movies, beginning with the around $40 million “Fireheart.”

In another sign of expansion at Anton, it was announced on Sunday that Anton, along with Riverstone Pictures, is also co-financing Neill Blomkamp’s disaster thriller “Greenland,” produced by  Thunder Road Pictures’ Basil Iwanyk. STXinternational is handling international distribution and CAA Media Finance, along with Endeavor Content, representing U.S.  domestic rights.

Federation Ent. currently produces about 15 series a year, which will very soon shoot up to 20 annually.

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