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Top UK Film Producers Launch 'Visible Films' Investment Structure

A trio of top film production companes, Ecosse Films, Recorded Picture Company and Samuelson Productions, have jointly developed a new approach to UK film funding which will enable individuals to invest directly in three independent film production companies, benefiting from two forms of tax relief.
The producers have created an investment structure to combine the tax benefits of the well-established 1998 Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) with the new 2007 Film Tax Relief (FTR).
The attraction of combining EIS with FTR under the Visible Films structure is the potential to lower the bar to film profitability. The tax benefits which can be combined under the new Visible Films scheme are: EIS; 20% income tax relief on new ordinary shares up to £400,000 per tax year; Exemption from Capital Gains Tax on qualifying shares held for three years or more; 100% Inheritance Tax Relief after two years; Loss relief against income or capital gains for losses made after three years; and unlimited capital gains tax deferral on realised gains.
Under FTR the Tax rebate paid to the production company of up to 20% of costs, additional relief of up to 100% of costs is secured via the production company’s own corporation tax return or relief of up to 180% of costs is secured via the production company’s own corporation tax return (if no rebate claimed.)
By launching their own film investment companies, the producers can offer the public direct investment into their films.
The three new companies are Visible Films (Ecosse) plc, Visible Films (RPC) plc and Visible Films (Samuelson) plc. In total the Visible Films companies aim to raise up to £24m across the three companies which would be used to finance film production.
The minimum investment in each Visible Films company is £10,000 and the target for each company is £8 million.
“The FTR enables producers to take the initiative in raising film investment and compete for funding on the quality of their films,” said Anne Sheehan, Executive Producer, Visible Films (Administration) Ltd.
The producers have introduced a package of privileges for the investors to encourage investment and to involve investors in the detail of film production and distribution.
“British films are now not only winning major awards in Hollywood and London, but are also huge box office successes. The Visible Films companies offer the opportunity to invest in producers who have made films such as Mrs Brown, The Last Emperor or Wilde,” commented Robert Bernstein, Producer, Visible Films (Ecosse) plc.
“One of the attractions of this scheme is that investors can be involved in a varied group of films with high aspirations and with risk mitigation from the tax relief available,” said Jeremy Thomas, Producer Visible Films (RPC) plc.
Commenting for Visible Films (Samuelson) plc, Marc Samuelson, Producer, said: “Another attraction of investing in our schemes is the fact that investments will be channelled directly into making and distributing films.”
The sponsor of all three Offers for Subscription for the Visible Films companies is Braemar Securities Limited. The Prospectuses have been prepared with the assistance of the companies’ solicitors Stevens & Bolton LLP.
For further information on investing in independent British films visit or contact Anne Sheehan, Visible Films (Administration) Limited on 020 7025 8032 or [email protected].
Copies of the prospectuses for each company can also be downloaded
Each production company is headed by producers who have proven track records in the industry and between them their films have won or been nominated for 14 Oscars, 11 Golden Globes and 26 BAFTAs.

Steve Preston

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