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Sidney Kimmel Entertainment, Ivanhoe Pictures Merge to Form SK Global

China Cultural and Entertainment Fund is making an equity investment in the new company

Indie production company Sidney Kimmel Entertainment has merged with Hong Kong’s Ivanhoe Pictures to form SK Global, the companies announced Wednesday in a joint statement.

SK Global will pursue opportunities to produce and finance film and television content internationally. The China Cultural and Entertainment Fund, a private equity firm, is taking a substantial equity position in SK Global.

SKE Chairman and CEO Sidney Kimmel and Ivanhoe Pictures Chairman Robert Friedland will be co-chairmen of the new entity.

The two companies started to work together on a slate of local-language productions after Ivanhoe Co-Founder John Penotti introduced Kimmel and Friedland in 2015. SK Global will become the parent entity to both existing production companies, which will continue to release film and TV projects under their respective labels.

SK Global will control the more than 75 movies in the combined libraries of both companies, including Best Picture nominee “Hell or High Water.” Several films in SK Global’s library are being considered for international local-language adaptations on film and TV.

“Our recent collaborations have been immensely successful,” Kimmel and Friedland said in a joint statement. “Putting our respective operations under a larger tent has been an organic process. A unified SK Global gives us the strengthened operations and assets to grow our individual and collective businesses, and to expand the scope and creation of our international content. Initially, we have focused on the United States and Asian markets, but soon we will announce projects in Europe and Latin America where we are actively developing and financing a diverse slate of film and TV projects that will be the subject of forthcoming announcements.”

CCEF Chairwoman Yang Liu and Managing Director Alick Dong will provide strategic advice to SK Global. Dong will join Kimmel, Friedland and Penotti on the SK Global Board of Directors alongside Kimmel advisor Matthew Kamens and Ivanhoe Pictures Vice Chairman Gary Gartner, who will also come aboard.