StanChart PE-backed Prime Focus raising $10M for Dutch arm from AID Capital Partners

Mumbai-based visual entertainment services company Prime Focus Ltd is raising $10 million (Rs 54 crore) through the wholly owned Dutch arm Prime Focus World N.V. from Hong Kong-based private equity firm AID Capital Partners.

AID Capital is investing through optionally convertible preference shares in a transaction that values the company at $250 million, according to a market disclosure. This means the PE firm will pick around 4 per cent stake in this entity upon conversion.

This is part of a broader agreement where Prime Focus is separately investing $3 million in a new joint venture with AID Capital which will seek to provide the company’s services including 2D to 3D conversion, visual effects (VFX), clear cloud-based platform services and post-production services in China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan.

Prime Focus World N.V. provides creative and technical services to film, broadcast, commercials, internet and media industries.

Prime Focus, which employs 3,500 people and operates facilities across North America, the UK and India, will be able to enter new geographies as part of the upcoming JV.

Last October, Standard Chartered PE invested $35 million in Prime Focus. Soon after, it also put another $35 million into the firm by picking up NCDs.

Founded in 2007, AID Capital is based in Hong Kong and invests in the companies operating in China and the rest of Asia. It currently manages the multi-million-dollar AID Fund I that invests in growth equity and expansion capital, primarily in specific sectors such as entertainment, technology, retail and consumption industries. AID was founded by Kelvin Wu and Joel Chang who have investment banking experience in Asia.

One of its existing portfolio firms is Legendary Pictures, a top-tier independent Hollywood production studio and producer of blockbuster movies including The Dark Knight, Inception, The Hangover and The Hangover 2.

Another investment in the media space was VODone, an online entertainment company offering mobile lottery, internet video and mobile gaming services. VODone was acquired by Dragon Joyce, a leading mobile gaming company. AID Capital also invested in Orange Sky Golden Harvest (OSGH), a motion picture exhibition, production and distribution company.

(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)

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