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UTA, MRC and Valence Media Form Joint Television Venture

The talent agency will hold a minority stake in Civic Center Media, which will develop, produce and finance premium content

UTA is teaming with Valence Media and its independent studio, Media Rights Capital, on a new joint content venture.

Dubbed Civic Center Media (the agency’s Beverly Hills headquarters is located on Civic Center Drive), the new venture will develop, produce and finance premium television series, and the search for an executive to lead it is now underway. UTA will own an undisclosed minority stake, and financial details of the transaction were not revealed. Valence Media is the parent company of The Hollywood Reporter.

The deal is UTA’s first significant move since taking on $200 million in private equity in August. The agency has signaled that expanding into content production would be a key spending priority; it already owns an equity stake in American Idol producer Industrial Media.

As with Endeavor Content and CAA’s wiip, this new agency-affiliated content company claims a more streamlined development process, with less overhead and more favorable financial and creative terms for creators, with an emphasis on potential backend benefit. Although UTA hopes Civic Center Media will serve as an additional resource for its clients, the new venture is open to working with all artists. The arrangement is non-exclusive, and UTA and MRC will continue to work with other studios and talent firms, respectively. In August, MRC formed a joint venture with talent management-production player Management 360 to develop and back TV projects.

“As we looked at the landscape of potential partners and content models, our priority was to work with a studio that puts artists and creators first,” UTA CEO Jeremy Zimmer said Wednesday in a statement. “MRC shares our ‘artist first’ mentality and our belief that the time has come for a new business model

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