Guernsey continues to establish itself as a leading international film finance centre and this week held its second event in London to showcase “Guernsey Film”.
The event, held at Coutts in London attracted over 130 senior members of the UK film community and included presentations from both Guernsey and UK industry experts. It was hosted by Guernsey Finance -the promotional agency for the Island’s finance industry, in conjunction with Guernsey Film.
Guernsey Film was formed three years ago by finance industry professionals and representatives from the Guernsey Government to act as a centre of excellence for the collective infrastructure and expertise available in the Island and to provide financial structuring solutions for films.
The group comprises a number of different firms with expertise across a wide spectrum of film finance, including banking, investment, funds, insurance, intellectual property, law, tax and IT.
The London event, titled ‘Film Wrapped Up: The Guernsey Advantage – because life should be simple’, attracted an audience of financiers, advisers to the film industry, producers and directors, media and entertainment lawyers, distributors and agents, accountants and tax advisers.
Presentations included an update on the progress of Guernsey Film, an overview of the marketplace, technical innovation, the Island’s world leading position in intellectual property and image rights together with effective financing and structuring opportunities.
Keynote speaker Baker & McKenzie’s wealth management Partner Ashley Crossley, was particularly impressed with the turnout and with the level of information and detail provided on Guernsey and its expertise in catering for the financial aspects of film making.
“This event was very important because it brought together the advisory community, film professionals looking for investors and investors themselves in a single sector-specific event. For clients with an interest in investing in film, Guernsey’s wider appeal is that the jurisdiction already produces wealth management structures with which investors are already familiar. In addition, Guernsey’s common law structure also provides legal certainty.”
Steve Grant, of low budget independent film maker Fleet Street Productions, was similarly impressed with the event.
“I appreciate the sheer level of expertise available and the ability to speak to people who really know their stuff.”
Guest speakers, in addition to Mr Crossley, included Neil Phelps, Senior Client Partner, Coutts; Matt O’Kane, Senior Tax Manager, Deloitte; and Justin Bellinger, Business Development Director, Cable & Wireless.
The event, which took place at Coutts’ iconic headquarters in the Strand, was followed by a networking reception sponsored by Cable & Wireless. Guernsey Film’s launch event, towards the end of 2010, attracted just over 70 professionals linked to the film industry.
Peter Niven, Chief Executive of Guernsey Finance, said: “The first Guernsey Film seminar in 2010 was a real success so to have nearly doubled the number of delegates at this week’s event was a ringing endorsement of the appeal of the Guernsey Film message in what is an important centre for the film industry and all the more so at a time when Guernsey itself will be host to Kenneth Brannagh’s new film adaptation of The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society which will be shot in the island in the late summer starring Kate Winslet.”
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