Enhanced Bankable Offering Eliminates COVID-19 Barriers for Independent Productions
LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Leading film and television completion guarantor, Media Guarantors, a subsidiary of SpottedRisk, today announced a critical change to its completion guarantee that removes the COVID-19 and communicable disease exclusions from the policy. With this major enhancement, Media Guarantors has become the first and only completion bond company able to offer a bond that is fully bankable for commercial lenders during the COVID-19 pandemic, unlocking critical commercial lending and finance to the independent film and TV sector.
Completion guarantees are a key element of the independent financing structure, and as the Coronavirus pandemic emerged in early 2020, commercial lending to the independent film community stalled when insurers and reinsurers added an exclusion of COVID-19 and other communicable diseases to all production insurance and completion bonds. As lenders required an unqualified delivery guarantee from the completion bond, the independent sector effectively shut down due to a production default risk that no bank considered viable.
In removing the exclusion from the completion bond, Media Guarantors can issue a “clean,” unqualified guarantee of a project’s completion and delivery, unlocking the full capacity of commercial lenders and financiers and facilitating the well-established independent financing model for its producer clients. Producers can now secure funding at reasonable commercial borrowing terms and banks can return to a profitable business sector that was stagnated by the pandemic.
“We, along with SpottedRisk, have worked over the last nine months to find a solution allowing independent film production to resume,” said Media Guarantors CEO Fred Milstein. “It is a significant development that we can issue a standard completion guarantee with no exclusion and assume the Covid and Communicable Disease risk within the scope of the bond and hopefully ‘green shoots’ for the resurgence of a strong, vibrant independent film business.”
Media Guarantors operates under the leadership of CEO Fred Milstein, Head of Production and Underwriting Scott Nicolaides, and Head of Legal and Business Affairs Erica Fishkin. Media Guarantors maintains an exceptional level of service and support, engaging directly with its clients to underwrite the completion guarantees it provides.
Media Guarantors was purchased in August 2020 by SpottedRisk, an analytics-focused underwriting firm that develops and distributes insurance products traditional insurance markets deem “uninsurable.” For over a year, Media Guarantors and SpottedRisk worked tirelessly to eliminate the communicable disease and COVID-19 exclusions from the Media Guarantors completion bond.
“Our supporting insurance markets ultimately agreed to the removals largely due to SpottedRisk’s proprietary analytics and unique predictive models for COVID exposures built by in-house PhDs in Data Science,” said SpottedRisk’s CEO and Co-Founder Janet Comenos.
SpottedRisk is the first, and only provider, of A-rated (A.M. Best) Coronavirus Production Insurance for the Film and TV industry, launched in August 2020 at the height of the pandemic.
Media Guarantors will first prioritize clients filming in Summer and Fall 2021 for the bankable bond.
ABOUT MEDIA GUARANTORS
Media Guarantors™ (www.mediaguarantors.com) is a specialized completion guarantor that brings unmatched experience, flexibility, security and responsiveness to a wide range of domestic and international filmmakers and productions. A critical resource and partner to filmmakers around the world, Media Guarantors brings filmmakers tailored solutions to support their creative visions.
SpottedRisk is a private-equity backed specialty analytics and underwriting firm founded in 2016 by two former technology industry executives who built an expert team consisting of data scientists, research analysts, and veteran underwriters. The company focuses on building new data-driven insurance products that address the gaps in coverage in the entertainment, event, and other industries. SpottedRisk uses defensible analytics to improve the underwriting and evaluation of emerging and specialty risks, taking advantage of time-sensitive market dislocations. SpottedRisk’s analytics have been featured in dozens of stories written by top-tier publications such as The New York Times, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, and Adweek. To learn more, visit www.spottedrisk.com
Lexi Giannandrea, [email protected], 617.990.2651