Originally established in March 2017, the fund has now been doubled to £200 million. Its designed to help production companies deal with cashflow issues caused because the streamers often pay cash on delivery rather than the point of commission they’re used to.
Among the companies to have benefitted from the previous fund are Roughcut Television, the comedy production company behind Trollied, Cuckoo and People Just do Nothing. There has also been funding for Drama Republic, which made Black Earth Rising, a drama based on the Rwandan genocide.
Denis Wray, Financial Controller at Drama Republic, said, “Barclays understands the financial challenges associated with high-end drama production financed in large part by an SVOD licence. For Black Earth Rising, the borrowing profile was steep and the repayment tail was longer than the UK industry was used to. As partners, Barclays are supportive of their producers, aware of the risks and challenges that we navigate on a daily basis, knowledgeable, ready to listen and available to help when required.”
Lorraine Ruckstuhl, Head of Media at Barclays Corporate Banking, added: “We’re seeing more and more SVOD activity and an increasing need for tailored financing that meets the specific needs of both the production company and the subscription service. With more SVOD platforms on the way and a growing focus on original content, demand is set to increase further and finance providers will have to keep innovating to meet changing funding requirements. We’re demonstrating our commitment to help the UK’s production companies make more world-class programming by doubling our SVOD fund and will also develop new financing options for the sector as the industry continues to evolve.”