Guggenheim Partners and other investors have invested $240 million in Media Rights Capital, earning a minority stake in the company that produces “House of Cards,” two individuals with knowledge of the investment told TheWrap.
The investment values MRC at more than $1 billion, one individual said, while another said that figure was a little high. Representatives for Media Rights Capital and Guggenheim declined to comment.
Update: A spokesman for Guggenheim told TheWrap: “A private investor group, formed in conjunction with Guggenheim, that includes Guggenheim as a minority investor, made a minority, non-controlling investment in MRC.”
MRC co-CEOs Modi Wiczyk and Asif Satchu will retain control of the film and TV production company they launched in 2006 with investments from Goldman Sachs, AT&T, advertising giant WPP and private equity firm ABRY Partners. Some of the original investors sold their stakes in this deal.
MRC has been a reliable co-financier and producer for movie studios in search of partners, producing Seth MacFarlane‘s “Ted” and Neill Blomkamp‘s “Elysium,” among others. The company’s next movie, “A Million Ways to Die in the West,” opens at the end of May.
It launched a TV division in 2008, and has made several shows for the CW, ABC and HBO. “House of Cards,” the political thriller starring Kevin Spacey, is its biggest hit thus far. MRC owns the license to all of its movies and TV shows, which increases the value of the company in the eyes of its investors given the money paid for the rights.
Bloomberg previously reported a group of investors, including Guggenheim, had acquired a stake, but did not disclose the size of the investment.
Guggenheim is a financial services company that controls more than $200 billion in assets around the world. It has made a significant foray into the entertainment business, buying the Hollywood Reporter and Billboard, Dick Clark Productions and placing a bid for Hulu. The fund also holds a majority stake in the Los Angeles Dodgers.