Cyber Group inks copro deal with Lagardere, raises investment

French producer and distributor Cyber Group Studios has inked a major coproduction pact with Lagardere Entertainment-owned producer Timoon and the pair will launch a number of new kids series.

The two will initially coproduce two series; animated series Fish n’ Chips and Bambalaye! Cyber Group Studios will handle the international distribution and licensing of both series, which have a budget of around Euro6 million (US$8.5 million) each.

This follows the company’s successful raising of Euro1.5 million from investment fund La Financiere Viveris to expand and fund acquisitions.

Pierre Sissman, president, Cyber Group, told TBIvision: “We will share the production and ownership of these series 50/50. We share the same philosophy in several areas. We are very strong internationally and Lagardere are very strong in France.”

Meanwhile, the cash from the La Financiere Viveris, the private equity arm of French bank Caisses d’Epargne, will be used for expansion. Cyber Group has five series in production and development, including a feature length movie Ozie Boo Saves The Planet, as well as three further projects from its recently launched documentary division.

“We raised the money to speed up our growth because we have a lot of productions going on. It will also shape our acquisition strategy,” says Sissman, adding that it is looking to invest in production companies in the animated movie space. “We are looking to pick up companies. There’s another area of animation that we’re looking at.”