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Ryan Kavanaugh’s Relativity Media will increase its Chinese media presence with a joint equity investment and production and distribution agreement with China’s third-biggest broadcaster, Jiangsu Broadcasting Corp (JSBC).
The network, which is owned by the local government in the eastern province of Jiangsu, will make an equity investment in Relativity as part of the deal, the companies said in a statement. Financial details of the transaction, which was announced at the Shanghai International Film Festival, were not revealed.
JSBC operates 14 TV channels, radio, newspapers, magazines and Internet properties in the wealthy eastern province.
“Relativity has long been focused on expanding our footprint in this incredibly dynamic market,” said Kavanaugh, CEO of Relativity, in a statement.
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“By collaborating with JSBC, we will deepen our relationship with the Chinese media and entertainment industry and provide a world-class platform from which to co-develop Chinese and international film, television and sports content with one of the preeminent media companies in China,” he said.
Bu Yu, president of JSBC, hailed Relativity as “one of the world’s most disruptive and fastest growing media companies.”
“Combining our distribution and content with Relativity’s will strengthen the formidable platforms of both our companies,” Yu said. “This partnership will allow JSBC and Relativity to collaborate across the full range of content from film and television, to sports and music, and we are excited about the possibilities it creates.”
Relativity already owns a Beijing-based film distribution and financing outfit in Beijing called SkyLand Entertainment. This was originally launched as a joint venture between Relativity, IDG China Media Fund and SAIF Partners, but is now a wholly-owned subsidiary of Relativity and maintains a close strategic relationship with the government-run distributor Huaxia. Recent Relativity films released in China include Immortals, Mirror Mirror and Free Birds.
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