The Weinstein Company has lost Colony Capital as prospective buyer but is expected to fetch around $300 million in a sale to be completed by the end of November, an individual familiar with the negotiations told TheWrap.
There are 22 prospective buyers interested including Ron Burkle’s Yucaipa, Viacom, MGM and Lionsgate, the insider said. A condition of the sale would include the resignation of Co-Founder and Dimension Films President Bob Weinstein.
Moelis & Company Managing Director Carlos Jimenez is handling the sale on behalf of the TWC board.
After pulling $35 million in a pledged emergency cash infusion from the company, Tom Barrack’s Colony Capital is out of the race entirely, said the insider, but Fortress Investment Group is stepping up to provide the cash.
The studio’s board of directors refused a lowball offer of $175 million from Colony for the entire company, worth between $400 million and $500 million prior to the Harvey scandal, TheWrap reported. TWC’s portfolio includes a profitable TV division, Dimension and fashion holdings.
TWC needs operational cash for overhead and to finance their various productions and planned theatrical releases, like the Nov. 22 low-budget horror film “Polaroid.”
When Colony pulled out last week, one top investment banker suggested bankruptcy would be the only way to “cleanse the asset” was through some kind of reorganized sale. If Fortress holds firm, they could avoid the process alltogether.
The resignation of Bob Weinstein would be mandatory, the individual said, thanks to his own recent sexual harassment accusations made by “The Mist” executive producer Julie Segel. Bob vehemently denied the accusations.
A winning TWC buyer would not inherit any criminal liability from disgraced former CEO Harvey Weinstein’s dozens of sexual assault accusers, the individual added. In addition to rape accusations made against the mogul, the company itself is currently saddled with a lawsuit form one Harvey accuser and from the former CEO himself.