Margetts Fund Management has unveiled Gerry Anderson Productions, an enterprise investment scheme (EIS) that aims to create a new version of the cult television series Captain Scarlet.
Gerry Anderson created the original series in 1967 using a puppet animation technique called supermarionation. He also used this technique for Thunderbirds, Joe 90, Stingray and Fireball XL5. The new series will be created using computer graphics and preparation work is currently being done including the writing of scripts and set design.
The directors of the EIS say there is a global following for Anderson's work and they anticipate interest in the new series from children and adults who grew up watching the original series. Revenue is expected to come from the UK and overseas. In addition to television rights, there are also likely to be merchandising opportunities, including spin-off sales of DVDs, videos, toys and computer games.
Investors will get the standard income tax relief and capital gains tax deferral that comes with EIS investing but to qualify, they must hold the shares for at least three years. This EIS could be of interest to sophisticated investors who may have been fans of Gerry Anderson's animated puppets when they were younger and who believe an updated Captain Scarlet could be a hit with viewers.
Gerry Anderson Productions will commit 45 per cent of profits made to its partners, including Margetts and Carlton International Media, which owns the rights to the original series. This means investors will have a share of 55 per cent of the profits, but there is no guarantee that any profit will be made since production costs could be high.
It may also be difficult for investors to realise their investment, since there is no ready market for shares and a flotation, while possible, is not guaranteed.