Panel To Script Storyboard For VCs To Date Entertainment

New Delhi: | Updated: Nov 6 2003, 05:30am hrs
With almost four months to go for the D-day, pre-budget pitch has already been initiated for the entertainment sector. A high-powered committee, headed by member Planning Commission NK Singh, has been set up to suggest policy changes for attracting venture capital funds in the sector. The committee would make its recommendations within six weeks, in time for the information and broadcasting ministry to seek Budget incentives.

Even as some film-makers have been attracting venture funds individually, the committee is expected to help get clean investments from VCs in an organised manner. Speaking to the media here on Wednesday, I&B minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said there are two terms of reference for the committee. These are suggesting a roadmap outlining a strategy to attract VC funds for the entertainment sector; and studying the investment regime in India to recommend policy changes, in order to facilitate such fund inflow, the minister said.

The committee members include I&B secretary Pawan Chopra, ICICI CMD K V Kamath, banking additional secretary Vinod Rai and director-general Foreign Trade L Mansingh. The special invitees on the committee are film-makers Shekhar Kapur, Manmohan Shetty, Subhash Ghai, Bobby Bedi and chairman of the Indian Venture Capital Association (IVCA) Saurav Srivastava.

Although the film sector was granted the industry status two years ago, and institutional funding has started pouring in, organised clean investment is still a small fragment of the industry pie. So far, IDBI funding has been Rs 200 crore and that from banks around Rs 500 crore. According to consulting firm KPMG, the entertainment industry grew 6.4 per cent last year to Rs 16,600 crore, with television contributing the maximum to the growth.