Sharon Harel takes $3.7m stake in Pulse

Film producer Sharon Harel has acquired a 20% stake in UK indie Pulse for US$3.7 million. (Pictured: Pulse feature doc Shut Up and Play the Hits)
October 15, 2012

Film producer Sharon Harel has acquired a 20% stake in UK indie Pulse for £2.3 million (US$3.7 million).

As part of the deal, Harel (Lucky Number Slevin, Gosford Park) and her husband, venture capitalist Sir Ronald Cohen, will be joining an advisory board which will also include Sir Harry Solomon, a long-standing shareholder in Pulse. Harel is known for co-founding Capitol Films in 1989.

Pulse’s recent productions have included Sundance feature doc hit Shut Up and Play the Hits (pictured above) and Sky TV series Pineapple Dance Studios.

In a joint statement, Harel and Cohen said: “We have closely followed Pulse’s development over the last few years, through the involvement of Sir Harry Solomon, and have been greatly impressed by the entrepreneurial spirit at the heart of the company and its market-leading level creativity.

“Pulse is a world apart from others in its space and have a real appetite for innovation. The media industry is going through significant transformational change and Pulse is perfectly placed to take advantage of this.”

Pulse said the investment would “act as a catalyst for the transformation of the business in key areas,” including developing and owning IP; digital and technology expansion; international development – with a particular focus on the U.S. and Brazil – and content¬†distribution, where Pulse wants to “develop a direct relationship with its core audience.”

The indie was founded by Thomas Benski and Marisa Clifford in 2005, and has a notable portfolio of music documentaries, having worked with artists including Katy Perry, Blur, Coldplay and Take That.

Pulse CEO Benski said: “Sharon Harel and Sir Ronald are bringing in smart money which will allow us to accelerate our growth and consolidate the company’s position as a global leader in entertainment and creative content.

“Having this investment behind us, and Sir Harry, Sharon and Sir Ronald as advisors, will mean that we can accelerate growth and significantly expand our creative footprint, collaborating with the best in the industry and bringing top talent on-board.

“They will provide valuable experience and strategic business advice to the management team, which will help us to take advantage of opportunities in the fast evolving media landscape.”

About The Author
Managing editor with realscreen publication, an international print and online magazine that covers the non-fiction film and television industries. Darah is an award-winning journalist who has spent over two decades covering a wide range of issues from real estate and urban development to immigration, politics and human rights, primarily with The Vancouver Sun. Prior to joining realscreen, she was editor of Stream Daily, realscreen's sister publication covering the dynamic global digital video industry. She also served a stint as a war reporter in Afghanistan for television and print, and was a national business blogger with Yahoo Canada.