Thursday , June 1 2023

Exclusive – Source: Saudi Investment Fund to buy stake in legendary America


Lena B. Baker and Sid Azhar

The Saudi Public Investment Fund seeks to secure up to $ 700 million in shares in Legendary Entertainment, which produced movies such as dinosaurs and interstellar starships.

The transaction between the Public Investment Fund and Legendry will test Hollywood's desire for Saudi investment after extensive criticism of the role of Lizard on the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last month.


Kashoggi, who criticized Saudi prince Muhammad bin Salman, died at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2. The Saudi government denies that Prince Mohammed bin Salman is the one who ordered his assassination.

The deal could face opposition from some legendary executives who are concerned about the impact of Saudi investment on studio brands and the ability to attract top talent.

The disruption will be the latest sign of Khashoggi's death and how the world's largest oil exporter, Britain, will press to diversify its foreign investment, sources said.

According to a good source, Endeavor was in a crisis to cancel $ 400 million investment from public investment funds due to Khashoggi's death, fearing that its activities would affect reputation.

Saudi funds are planning to invest between $ 500 million to $ 700 million on legends and are in talks to appoint financial advisers to help negotiate, the official said.

A source familiar with Legendary's strategy said the company had not formally agreed with the public investment fund.

According to sources, despite the disruption caused by Khashoggi's death, the PIA believes that the majority shareholders of Legendary, Dalian and Wanda Group, will enter into a contract because they are under pressure to reduce their debt from foreign assets in Beijing.

Because the problem was not disclosed as confidential, the PIF plan is still in its infancy and there is no guarantee that the funds will make an official proposal to secure a stake in the legend.

Public investment funds and Legendree declined to comment. Wanda and Endeavor did not respond to your request for comment.

Some Hollywood representatives are already away from Saudi Arabia. For example, Gerard Butler did not show a new movie "Hunter Keller" in Riyadh last month after Khashoggi died.

Saudi movie theater planning

In the context of the ambitious economic and social reforms led by Prince Mohammed bin Salman, the opening of the Public Investment Fund to Hollywood, the capital of the global film industry, Has been.

Since the ban on movie theaters last year, the Public Investment Fund has signed a contract with Wanda, an investor of movie companies such as AMC Entertainment Holdings, to build a movie theater in the kingdom. Many Hollywood stars have visited the kingdom through promotional tours such as John Travolta and Jason Mumoa.

Saudi Arabia had a cinema in the 1970s, but powerful clergy closed them as Muslims in the Arab region increased in size.

Nonetheless, Saudi has worked hard with Western media and culture. The Saudi prince was watching the latest Hollywood movies and TV series on the massive scale in the kingdom despite the ban on cinemas.

To serve 32 million people in Saudi Arabia under the age of 30, the kingdom wants to build about 350 cinemas by 2030 and make 2,500 cinemas by 2030.

Wanda Investment

Wanda, led by billionaire King Jianlin, paid a unanimous $ 3.5 billion in the Pacific Rim in early 2016, produced the Pacific Rim and the Great Wall, and has a stake in Atlético Madrid. Luxury accommodation in Sydney and London.

However, Wanda is now focusing on its core domestic activities, particularly the commercial real estate sector, the financial sector, and Luanda Cinema Line Corp, China's largest movie theater operator.

(Korean time)

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