Cinedigm Signs Agreements with Six Chinese Entertainment Partners
OTT content and technology company Cinedigm Corp (NASDAQ:CIDM) signed off on six new Chinese entertainment partnerships at this year’s Beijing International Film Festival.
Cinedigm Chairman and CEO Chris McGurk and representatives from the participating companies gathered at a signing ceremony for business cooperation agreements between Cinedigm and the new Chinese partners, including:
1) China Intercontinental Communication Center – Based in Beijing, CICC (China Intercontinental Communication Center) is an international media company. Founded in 1994, it is the longest-established co-production documentary company in China. Since 2003, together with international broadcasters, it has co-produced and broadcast many factual programs, showcasing the many faces of China that are little-known outside the country, including its dynamic economic growth, its diverse cultures, its ancient history, its cutting-edge science and technology, and its natural beauty.
2) Youku Pictures Inc. – Youku Pictures Inc. is a subsidiary of China’s internet giant Alibaba Media & Entertainment Business Group. Founded in August 2014, Youku Pictures Inc. has produced 39 theatrical films with a total box office exceeding 3.1 billion US dollars, including the well acclaimed Wolf Warriors II, Monster Hunt, and Detective Chinatown, etc.
3) V1.CN – V1 Group was established in 2005, listed on the Main Board of Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2006, and became the first Chinese video media enterprise listed in Hong Kong. V1 Group Limited was named the “China’s Top 100 Internet Companies” three years in a row from 2014 to 2016.
4) Ling He Culture Media (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. – Ling He Culture Media is a Chinese film and TV company famous for its high-quality online series and its founder, Mr. Bai Yicong, who is a well-known Chinese producer, director and screenwriter.
5) Youth Studio – Youth Studio is a subsidiary of Beijing Film Academy, the largest institution specializing in the tertiary education for film and television production in Asia. The Academy has earned international recognition for its achievements in film production.
6) Emei Studio Group Co. Ltd. – Emei Studio is one of the seven major state studio groups in China, and the largest film and TV producers in Southwestern part of China.
“We are thrilled to have signed these business cooperation agreements with such a strong and vibrant group of Chinese entertainment partners,” said Chris McGurk Cinedigm Chairman and CEO. “In addition to our already established relationships with Bison Capital and Starrise Media, these new partners will help provide significant, quality Chinese content and business understanding to help us jump start the flow of movies, TV and short-form programming into and out of China. We are particularly pleased to have announced our new Chinese content OTT channel for an American audience here and to have also signed an important Belt and Road cooperation agreement to participate with China in that key cultural exchange initiative.”
During the Festival, McGurk gave three addresses to Festival attendees and officials, and participated in a panel discussion about China-US film and TV co-production and co-distribution.
On April 17th, at the Belt and Road Media Cooperation Union Forum hosted by Beijing Television and the China Intercontinental Communication Center (CICC), Mr. McGurk announced Cinedigm’s plan to launch a new Chinese language content based OTT channel in the United States to Chinese industry insiders and officials. This strategic presentation also reviewed Cinedigm’s plans, working closely with the appropriate Chinese regulatory authorities, to forge reciprocal relationships with Chinese entertainment companies to deliver content into and out of China for worldwide consumption.
Following that announcement, Mr. McGurk signed Proposal for “Belt and Road Media” Cooperation Union with CICC whereby the companies agreed to work together to encourage film and television productions, to build a “belt and road” broadcasting network and to improve the quality and prosperity of the media industry in both our countries.
At the same Forum in the afternoon, Mr. McGurk gave a more detailed presentation regarding Cinedigm’s plans for Chinese OTT Channels in the US to industry professionals from China and all over the world. This presentation reviewed Cinedigm’s expertise in the OTT and content distribution areas, including research data on audience habits and preferences, and how Cinedigm will use this data to guide the content of the planned Chinese content-based OTT channel in the U.S., targeted at an English-speaking audience and expected to launch by the end of this year.
On April 19th, prior to the signing ceremony, McGurk gave a keynote presentation titled “The Golden Age for Going Global,” which focused on new initiatives to globalize and monetize Chinese produced films and other entertainment content outside of China. Additionally, the Company premiered a new video reel that highlights Cinedigm’s current entertainment content and OTT businesses.
According to the company, this highly involved participation at such a key Chinese entertainment industry event emphasises Cinedigm’s move to become an important player in the reciprocal distribution of independent entertainment content and Over-the-Top (OTT) channels between the U.S. and China.
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