Wild Brain Inc., a leading producer of animated entertainment, announced Nov. 29, 2004, its closing of $30 million in funding led by Valence Capital Management as well as the companys existing investors, including Syntek Capital AG. In conjunction with the financing, Wild Brain adds two new members to the company's board of directors, including Roy Thiele-Sardiña, managing director, Valence Capital LLC and James A. Caccavo, managing partner, Valence Capital Management.
The funding will help fuel Wild Brains drive to produce more features, starting with its recent 3D CGI animation deal with Miramax Films and Dimension Films, whereby each company is co-financing and co-producing computer-generated (CGI) animated films. Wild Brain is currently in production on OPUS its first joint production with Miramax and Dimension Films which Craig Mazin (SCARY MOVIE 3) will adapt from an idea by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author and illustrator, Berkeley Breathed.
Wild Brain will use the proceeds to further accelerate and support its production of feature film, commercial advertising and television properties.
"Wild Brain is focused on a hot market," said Thiele-Sardiña. "Currently three of the top four U.S. feature films are animated movies. We're excited about working with the Wild Brain team and believe that the additional financing will help fuel Wild Brain's success in this lucrative business arena."
"Our original deal with Miramax and Dimension Films included the production of multiple animated features," said Jeff Fino, exec producer, Wild Brain. This additional funding signifies we are following through on our promise to produce a series of films, and continue to support our development of commercial advertising and television properties.
Thiele-Sardiña has more than 20 years of computer technology experience. Previously managing partner of HighBAR Ventures, he was a co-founder/ceo of Ingrian Networks, a leading data privacy provider and a co-founder/ceo of Tasmania Network Systems, a cache proxy company that was acquired by Cisco Systems. Thiele-Sardiña was also a member of the founding management team for Brocade Communications Systems. Prior to Brocade, Thiele-Sardiña was with Sun Microsystems for 11 years where he was chairman, responsible for Sun's Corporate Development Organization.
Prior to forming Valence, Caccavo was the managing director of Moore Capital's Private Equity Group. Before joining Moore Capital, he was president/ceo of Tickets.com. From 1988 to1996, Caccavo was a founder and senior exec of Sullivan Communications, helping build it into a leading graphic arts company. He began his career in finance at Merrill Lynch and GTE Corp. He is a director of several privately held companies, including: Archimedes Technology Group, Avexus, Naked Juice, Premier Retail Networks (PRN) and Scene7.
Valence Capital Management LP is a New York-based private equity firm, which serves as the private equity arm of Moore Capital Management, one of the largest hedge funds in the world. Valence invests in leading late stage venture-backed and middle-market companies in the Information Technology, Media, Consumer Products and Business Services markets. Valence manages more than 25 portfolio investments, including: Archimedes Technology, Arkivio, Avexus, Berkeley Heart Labs, Naked Juice, Privasys, PRN, Scene7 and Storactive.
Syntek Capital AG (www.syntekcapital.com) is a private equity investment firm with a particular focus on the Media and Technology sectors. It makes and manages investments in Europe and the U.S. from offices in London, Munich, Tel Aviv and Wilmington, Delaware.
Wild Brain Inc. (www.wildbrain.com) is an award-winning animation studio that develops and produces content for the global film, TV and commercials markets. Founded in 1994 by senior business and creative leaders Jeff Fino, John Hays and Phil Robinson, Wild Brain's client list includes Universal, Twentieth Century Fox, Disney, DreamWorks, Warner Bros, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network and Oxygen. Wild Brain is also a top U.S. producer in the animated commercials sector, with a client list that includes Nike, Coca-Cola, Ford, Nabisco, Sony, McDonald's, Target, Nestle, THE WALL STREET JOURNAL, Chevrolet, Mattel and Levi Strauss.
Syntek Capital AG (www.syntekcapital.com) is a private-equity investment firm with a particular focus on the media and technology sectors.