Cinespace Studios sold to a private equity firm | Chicago News

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Cinespace Studios, which helped spark a boom in film and television production in Chicago, has been sold to a private equity firm that hired a former Netflix executive to lead the operation on Chicago’s West Side. .

Officials at TPG, a Texas and California-based buyout company, have not disclosed how much it paid for Cinespace’s operations in Chicago and Toronto. Crain’s Chicago Business announced a sale price of $ 1.1 billion.

Launched in Chicago in 2010 by the Pissios family, Cinespace Chicago operates 33 stages, with 15 more stages in development or conversion on more than 60 acres near Douglass Park. It is home to Dick Wolf’s Chicago shows, including the One Chicago series and Showtime’s “The Chi”.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to broaden their vision by creating a premier studio platform that serves the creative community and drives job growth in Toronto, Chicago and beyond,” said Jacob Muller, Managing Director of TPG Real. Real estate partners.

Eoin Egan, who was head of production services at Netflix, will be Cinespace’s chief operating officer, officials said.

Cinespace “intends to expand its employee base” in Chicago and Toronto, officials said.

“Community has always been at the heart of who we are at Cinespace, and I am deeply proud of the employment and educational opportunities we have created,” said Alex Pissios, President and CEO of Cinespace Chicago . “TPG’s investment will expand these efforts and create more jobs for Illinois, one of the many reasons we think they are the right fit to take over the company. “

The new owners of Cinespace plan to expand the CineCares Foundation, which provides residents of underserved Chicago neighborhoods with job training and education in the television and film industry.

Governor JB Pritzker welcomed the new owners of Cinespace and said in a statement he was pleased that the company was expanding “the state’s television and media production capacity will create opportunities for countless Illinoisians – including the vocational training and apprenticeship programs that have characterized Cinespace’s efforts in Illinois.

Illinois offers production companies 30% tax credits on production costs and wages up to $ 100,000 until 2026.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement she was “delighted” that the new owners of Cinespace are considering expanding its workforce.

“Chicago has a beautiful, fascinating cityscape with so much potential for film productions of all media and sizes,” said Lightfoot.

In 2019, film and television productions generated $ 560 million in revenue and created more than 15,000 jobs in Illinois, before operations came to a screeching halt during the COVID-19 pandemic. Production resumed once the city reopened in June.

Contact Heather Cherone: @HeatherCherone | (773) 569-1863 | [email protected]


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