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Zinc Media attracts $4.6m investment

Zinc Media’s Fighter Pilots: The Real Top Gun aired on ITV

UK-based factual production group Zinc Media has attracted £3.5m (US$4.58m) of investment to fuel further growth, following a fundraising round in the City of London.

Zinc Media, known as Ten Alps prior to a 2016 rebrand, is home to six factual TV production outfits: Blakeway, Blakeway North, Brook Lapping, Films of Record, Reef and Tern Television.

The new investment funding was raised through a share issue, which won support from existing shareholders and a number of new institutional investors.

Zinc Media operates in Belfast, Glasgow, Manchester and London, with an emerging Bristol base. Its recent programmes include Brook Lapping’s Inside Europe: Ten Years of Turmoil (3×60’ for BBC2); Blakeway’s Lost Cities with Albert Lin (6×60’ for National Geographic); and Fighter Pilots: The Real Top Gun (3×60’ for ITV).

Zinc plans to use the investment to enhance its presence around the UK and introduce new post-production technology across its sites. Going forward, all Zinc’s offices will use the same technology and post system, allowing the group to further grow its nations and regions commissions, the company said.

The funds will also be used to expand Zinc Communicate – the group’s comms agency working across publishing and content – allowing it to build a client base in digital marketing, video communication and brand-led content.

Zinc Media CEO Mark Browning said: “[The funding] means we can further invest in creative talent, invest in our nations and regions operations and invest in technology to help fuel Zinc’s overall growth.

“We experienced a huge uplift in demand for our out-of-London TV work last year, up 32% year on year, a demand we expect to grow even further. We are one of the UK’s very few multi-nation companies, so are a perfect partner for commissioners looking for high-quality nations and regions content.”

“As well as strengthening our TV footprint in the UK, we are also securing more US commissions, so need to invest further behind this growth. We have a fantastic senior creative team and this additional funding will help us extend that team even further. There is no better time for us to be investing in our creative growth.”

The company acquired factual producer Reef Television in a reverse takeover in 2015, with Sir Bob Geldof, who co-founded Ten Alps, stepping down from the board.

At the same time, it raised £4.5m (US$6.24m) in a funding round and restructured its debt, subsequently making an investment in drama prodco Chrysalis Vision.

The firm had previously refinanced in 2010 after recording a £13m loss in the first half of that year when the UK government withdrew funding for its Teachers TV network, leaving it nursing a bank debt of £6.65m.



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