Imagi funds 'Astroboy,' 'Gatchaman'

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HONG KONG – Imagi International Holdings will finance production of its upcoming features "Astroboy" and "Gatchaman" through the placement of HK$406 million ($52.1 million) in convertible bonds, the company announced Wednesday.

Singapore-based Oxley Capital Group is the lead investor, with other investors, including Hong Kong-based Winnington Capital and London-based CQS Capital.

The $52.1 million Imagi hybrid equity-debt funding, which could give the three new investors a 12.3% stake in Imagi, is the Oxley Capital Group's first media venture.

"It's all about opportunity for us," said Oxley Capital director Mark Pawley in Singapore on Wednesday.

"Imagi is the best opportunity in the Asia movie space that I've ever seen...We see a huge amount of upside in the share price in the next three years," Pawley added.

He also said Imagi fully funded its own movies, which gave the company a significant cost advantage.

The zero coupon convertible bonds have a denomination of HK $2 million ($256,632) with a three-year maturity period.

"Imagi is pleased to welcome Oxley Capital and CQS to our investor roster. They are respected investors with reputations for adding significant value to their portfolio companies," said Douglas Glen, co-CEO of Imagi.

Both films are set to be released in 2009 and will be distributed globally by Warner Bros. and The Weinstein Company.

Janine Stein in Singapore contributed to this report.
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