Film and TV investment bank ACF sells majority stake to Forest Road

Thomas Dey

Media and entertainment investment bank ACF is to sell a majority stake in its business to Los Angeles-based merchant bank The Forest Road Company.

The two companies have signed definitive agreements on the deal, which is subject to regulatory approval. 

UK and US-based ACF has been behind key deals in the media sector, including the sale of The Lord of The Rings and The Hobbit intellectual property to Embracer Group, the sale of Pilgrim Studios to Lionsgate, Leftfield Entertainment’s acquisition by ITV, and the sale of Charlie Brooker and Annabel Jones company Broke & Bones to Netflix.

Forest Road works across sectors including media and entertainment, renewable energy, digital assets, and life sciences. It has over 80 employees.

ACF will continue operating under the ACF brand and ACF’s CEO Thomas Dey will continue to lead the company.

Jeremy Tarica, head of Forest Road’s advisory platform, will oversee ACF’s integration into the Forest Road business.

The combined group will target intellectual property holders, brands, and businesses in the media and entertainment space. This includes mergers and asset sales from the large studios, deals that support the growth of the SVOD channels with premium content, talent management and agency deals, and the increased appetite for foreign language content and the necessary geographic expansion.

“We are thrilled to welcome ACF to the Forest Road family, with their impressive track record of selling premium IP and facilitating iconic transactions across the globe in the content production arena. We are confident that, together, we can unlock incredible opportunities for growth within our portfolio, augmenting the capabilities of our respective businesses,” said Tarica.

“In a rapidly evolving media environment we need to match our client and market needs and evolve ourselves. This is a tremendously exciting next step in growing ACF’s capability by joining the Forest Road family. By uniting with this incredibly ambitious and well-connected team we are accelerating the fire power of the service offering. The media landscape is growing more sophisticated, and our clients’ needs are growing. With this transaction I am confident we can raise the standards further and deliver an even better-quality client solution,” said Dey.

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