UK pubcaster Channel 4 has appointed former The Garden CEO Nick Curwin to its Indie Growth Fund Advisory Board.
Curwin joins the board as an external independent expert alongside Twofour and Boom Pictures chairman Lorraine Heggessey and C4′s executive team, helping to oversee the fund’s operation, review its performance and make recommendations to the pubcasters corporation board for investments and exits.
In addition to these responsibilities, Curwin will also creatively mentor fund investees with Heggessey.
“Nick brings extensive indie experience having successfully built two major UK factual production companies with award-winning content portfolios,” said Jonathan Allan, commercial director at C4 who oversees the Indie Growth Fund, in a statement. “His insight will be invaluable to the team as we continue to help grow our invested companies and seek new investment opportunities.”
The £20m (US$26.96m) fund was created in 2014 to help support the UK indie creative industry, outside the regular commissioning cycle, by providing access to funding for start-ups and SMEs based in the UK to help them to scale their businesses.
Since its inception, it has invested in 13 UK companies: Arrow International Media, Barcroft Media Group, Eleven Film, Firecrest Films, Lightbox Media, Parable Ventures, Popkorn Media, Renowned Films, Spelthorne Community Television, The RightsXchange (TRX), True North Productions, Voltage TV Productions and Whisper Films.
In 2017, C4 made its first two exits for its initial fund investments. The Leeds-based indie True North Productions was acquired by Sky in January and in October, the pubcaster sold its stake in Renowned Films to U.S. company Critical Content.
Curwin launched, scaled and sold his two production companies Firefly (now Dragonfly) and The Garden with his friend Magnus Temple.
Dragonfly was sold to Shine in 2007, three years after its launch. In 2010, the pair set up The Garden, which received seven BAFTA-nominations and two BAFTA awards for programming including The Family, One Born Every Minute, 24 Hours in A&E and 24 Hours in Police Custody.
Following ITV Studios’ acquisition of The Garden in 2013 Curwin stayed on as CEO. He stepped down earlier this year, but remains a board director.