Channel 4 has taken a minority stake in Scottish indie Firecrest Films based in Govan, Glasgow.

Firecrest Films was set up by Nicole Kleeman in 2008 with an initial focus on current affairs. Run solely by Kleeman, Firecrest has expanded into features, documentary and specialist factual.

C4 has invested via its Indie Growth Fund.

Firecrest’s returning format Supershoppers for Channel 4 won both this year’s BAFTA Scotland and RTS Scotland Awards for the best feature and factual entertainment programme. Firecrest are currently in production with four series and three single films for the BBC and Channel 4.
Firecrest’s past production credits include: The Secret Life Of Your Clothes for BBC 2; a number of films for BBC 1’s Panorama including The Truth About Pills And Pregnancy; and Channel 4 Dispatches films including Secrets Of Poundland, Secrets Of Cadbury and Low Pay Britain. Firecrest has also made several high profile films for Channel 4 News.
David Abraham, Chief Executive of Channel 4 said: “Investing in an impressive Scottish producer such as Nicole builds on Channel 4’s on-going commitment to develop a UK-wide creative industry with a focus on growing businesses outside of London to ensure TV better reflects the stories and lives of people right across the UK.”
Nicole Kleeman said: “This is an exciting time for Scotland’s booming indie sector and with Channel 4’s investment I’m looking forward to hiring a new creative team to increase our output and in turn scale a significant factual TV business in Glasgow which will hopefully bring more opportunities to a new generation of Scottish production talent.”
Laura Franses, Head of Fund, said: “We’re delighted to make our first investment into a news and current affairs company with considerable potential. Working closely with Ian Mackenzie’s Nations & Regions team in Glasgow, I’ve been watching Nicole’s company take shape over the last couple of years. I think it’s a great moment for the Growth Fund to invest in such a strong powerful entrepreneur and help her get to the next stage.”
C4’s Indie Growth Fund portfolio now comprises twelve UK-based businesses including: Arrow International Media, Barcroft Media Group, Eleven Film, Lightbox Media, Popkorn Media, Renowned Films, Spelthorne Community Television, The RightsXchange (TRX), True North Productions, Voltage TV Productions and Whisper Films.
C4 says that no output or minimum guarantees are given to invested companies in relation to Channel 4 commissions – and Growth Fund investments do not influence the strategy of Channel 4’s commissioning team.

Staff Reporter

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