We can cashflow the Australian federal Producer Offset, PDV Offset and Location Offset and Incentive, the Australian state-based PDV and Attraction Incentives, the New Zealand Screen Production Grant and the United Kingdom Film Tax Relief. We also cashflow Distribution Guarantees, International Presales, Sales Agents Advances and Licence Fees.

Fulcrum is not a traditional bank. We are a specialist industry lender. Core to our values is our commitment to fostering sustainable local screen industries in Australia and New Zealand that are hospitable to both established and emerging screen producers. This means we work with you in minimising your financing costs and maximising the money available to be spent on screen.

Fulcrum is genre, format and budget agnostic. Our experience is broad and ranges from low to high budgets; includes drama and documentary; covers feature film, traditional broadcast and video on demand; encompasses live action and animation; and extends to international co-productions, both official and unofficial.

Fulcrum’s focus is not on subject matter or anticipated market performance. Providing the project meets the relevant eligibility criteria, we tailor our services to provide flexible and favourable cashflow arrangements that will help you bring your project to the screen.

AUS

2040

AUS

Animal Kingdom

AUS

Bluey (Series 1)

Fulcrum helps me plan for all eventualities. They think ahead and advise me by helping me anticipate what is best for the film.

Trish Lake, Freshwater Pictures

(The Burning Season, Wik v Queensland,
Getting Square, Love Opera)

AUS

Debi Marshall

AUS

Diary of an Uber Driver

AUS

Doctor Doctor

AUS

First Contact (Series 2)

AUS

Gurrumul

AUS

H is for Happiness

AUS

Hearts & Bones

NZ

Kiri & Lou (Series 1)

Fulcrum is the most informed, flexible and filmmaker-friendly lender in Australia.

Causeway Films

(The Babadook, The Nightingale,
Cargo, Buoyancy)

AUS

Ladies in Black

AUS

Lion

AUS

Little Monsters

AUS

Long Story Short

NZ

Mrs Fisher and The Crypt of Tears

AUS

Mystify

Fulcrum’s contracting process is simple and their representatives are highly informed and a delight to work with.

Lingo Pictures

(Upright, Lambs of God, On The Ropes,
The Secrets She Keeps)

AUS

Please Like Me (Series 3 & 4)

AUS

Rake (Series 3, 4, & 5)

AUS

Relic

AUS

Robbie Hood

AUS

Rosehaven (Series 3)

AUS

SAS: The Toughest Test

AUS

Spongo, Fuzz and Jalapena

AUS

The Deep (Series 3)

AUS

The Dressmaker

AUS

The Gloaming

AUS

The Hunting

AUS

The InBESTigators

AUS

The Letdown

NZ

The New Legends of Monkey (Season 2)

AUS

The Nightingale

NZ

Top of the Lake (Series 1 & 2)

AUS

Top Wedding

AUS

Upright

AUS

We Don’t Need A Map

Services

Production finance is a collaborative process. At Fulcrum, it’s our mission to be reliable, flexible and producer-friendly.

Fulcrum’s unparalleled experience as a cashflow financier in the Australian and New Zealand screen industries has provided us with an unmatched understanding of what is involved in financing the Producer Offset, Post-Digital and Visual Effects Offset and the New Zealand Screen Production Grant.

Our core services include cashflowing the Australian federal and state rebates, including the Producer Offset Loan, PDV Offset Loan, Location Offset Loan and Incentive Loan against the state-based PDVs and Attraction Incentives. Additionally, we provide loans for the New Zealand Screen Production Grant and the United Kingdom Film Tax Relief.

We also cashflow Distribution Guarantees, International Presales, Sales Agents Advances and Licence Fees.

Producer Offset Loan

The Producer Offset is an Australian federal government tax rebate for producers of eligible feature films and other formats, including television. Administered by Screen Australia, you can find out about eligibility criteria on their website.

Fulcrum has been cashflowing the Producer Offset since inception. Our process has been honed to make collaborating with us as easy and efficient as possible. Our unmatched experience with cashflow finance in Australia, coupled with our strong industry connections, means we are uniquely positioned to help producers devise the best possible financing structure for their project.

Generally, producers ask Fulcrum to cashflow 90% of their anticipated Producer Offset rebate. In some cases, Fulcrum may lend above 90%.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. You will need a draft production budget, draft QAPE spreadsheet, draft production schedule, draft finance plan and a project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel) to enable Fulcrum to consider lending against the Producer Offset on your project.

Process from project enquiry to loan repayment

Producer contacts Fulcrum with project enquiry

Fulcrum assesses project

Fulcrum issues letter of intent

Producer lodges funding applications, including Lol

At this point the produces should have 100% finance committed

Producer requests formal offer from Fulcrum

Fulcrum and producer negotiate terms of formal offer

Fulcrum issues formal offer on agreed terms

Fulcrum collaborates with producer and co-financiers to close financing

Fulcrum takes security

Fulcrum processes loan drawdown as per loan facility

Producer completes and delivers the project

Fulcrum processes loan repayment

Fulcrum releases security

New Zealand Screen Production Grant

Administered by the New Zealand Film Commission, the New Zealand Screen Production Grant (NZSPG) is a grant for New Zealand based producers of eligible feature films and other formats, including television.

New Zealand productions that have significant New Zealand content or are official co-productions are eligible for a cash grant of 40% of the project’s qualifying New Zealand production expenditure (QNZPE). See the New Zealand Film Commission website for full criteria and details.

Fulcrum’s standard model is to loan up to 90% of the anticipated NZSPG. In some cases, Fulcrum may lend above 90% of the anticipated NZSPG.

Fulcrum is the leading specialist media cashflow financier in New Zealand. Our knowledge of the NZSPG regime, our understanding of the requirements of production in New Zealand and the depth of our industry relationships are unmatched. This means that nobody is more equipped than Fulcrum to provide New Zealand producers with cashflow solutions that are informed, flexible and tailored to the particular requirements of their production.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. You will need a draft production budget, draft QNZPE breakdown, draft production schedule, draft finance plan and a project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel) to enable Fulcrum to consider lending against the NZSPG on your project.

 

Documentary Producer Offset Loan

For documentary producers in Australia, Fulcrum offers a low-cost, low-admin loan with the following terms for eligible documentary projects:

No arrangement fee

Legal fees fixed at $3,500

Fixed interest rate

As part of our commitment to a sustainable local screen industry, Fulcrum has been a passionate supporter of the Australian documentary sector for over a decade.

After consulting with industry stakeholders on the pressure points for documentary producers, in March 2020 Fulcrum launched a documentary loan product that takes a low-cost, light-admin approach.

At a minimum, projects must be a feature documentary or documentary television program that is Producer Offset eligible. Otherwise, projects will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. You will need a draft production budget, draft QAPE spreadsheet, draft production schedule, draft finance plan and a project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel) to enable Fulcrum to consider lending on your project.

Federal And State PDV Offset Loans

The federal Post, Digital and Visual Effects (PDV) Offset is a refundable tax offset for productions that utilise Australian based facilities to deliver post-production services, regardless of where the production was filmed or where the producer is based. See full details for the federal PDV Offset Loan eligibility criteria.

This rebate is set at 30% of eligible post-production spend, of which Fulcrum usually cashflows 90% of the anticipated spend. In some cases, Fulcrum may lend above 90%.

State PDV rebates also exist in New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia. These incentives entitle eligible productions to a 10% rebate on qualifying PDV spend in the relevant state. If Fulcrum is providing a loan in relation to the Producer Offset, the federal PDV Offset or the Location Offset and Incentive on your project, we can also consider cashflowing any of the state-based PDV rebates.

Fulcrum has harnessed its unparalleled experience in cashflowing the federal and state PDV Offsets and its strong on-the-ground relationships with the relevant agencies to develop an in-depth understanding of how these incentives operate at all stages – from application to rebate. Off the back of this, Fulcrum has established streamlined and responsive processes to provide producer-friendly finance that is structured to meet your project’s requirements.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. You will need a draft production budget, draft PDV qualifying expenditure breakdown, draft production schedule, draft finance plan and a project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel) to enable Fulcrum to consider lending against the PDV Offset on your project.

Location Offset & State Attraction Grants

Administered by the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communications (the Department), the Location Offset is a federal refundable tax offset designed to encourage large-budget screen productions to film in Australia. It is applied at 16.5% of an eligible production’s qualifying Australian production expenditure.

Productions that qualify for the Location Offset can also apply for the Location Incentive, which provides a further grant of up to 13.5% of qualifying expenditure in addition to the 16.5% rebate delivered by the Location Offset. The Location Incentive is also administered by the Department.

As the leading screen production cashflow financier in Australia, Fulcrum has a deep understanding of the local sector, in particular the manner in which its screen production incentives operate. Our on-the-ground presence enables us to maintain an extensive network of industry connections, who keep us informed of the latest developments. Through our unmatched experience with cashflowing the federal PDV Offset, we have developed a sophisticated understanding of the technical and practical requirements associated with processing applications through the Department.

For eligibility criteria see the Department’s website.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. You will need a draft production budget, draft breakdown of qualifying production expenditure, draft production schedule, draft finance plan and a project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel) to enable Fulcrum to consider lending against the Location Offset and Incentive on your project.

 

 

State Attraction Grants

Most Australian states offer their own screen production and post-production attraction grants designed to attract productions to their region. Generally, the relevant state-based attraction grant is included alongside another type of incentive, such as the Producer Offset, the PDV Offset or the Location Offset.

Fulcrum has significant experience with cashflowing state government screen production incentives. Further, we have relationships with each of the state screen agencies, all of whom know Fulcrum well. This combination of experience and access enables us to add value by assisting producers to navigate the complexities associated with managing cashflow on projects that are accessing multiple incentives.

UK Film Tax Relief

The UK Film Tax Relief (FTR) entitles eligible producers of British films and high-end television projects to claim a cash rebate of up to 25% of qualifying UK expenditure.

Fulcrum has experience with cashflowing the FTR on Australian-UK co-productions and, with offices in Australia and representation in the UK, can offer on-the-ground support for those projects in both jurisdictions.

Having worked in London for 10 years, Managing Director Sharon Menzies has strong ties to the UK screen production and finance community, including relationships with sales and distribution partners. Fulcrum can leverage these relationships for the benefit of eligible projects.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. You will need a draft production budget identifying qualifying UK expenditure, draft production schedule, draft finance plan and project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel) to enable Fulcrum to consider lending against the FTR on your project.

Distribution, Sales and Licence Fees

In addition to cashflowing screen production and post-production tax credits, Fulcrum cashflows distribution guarantees, international presales, sales agent advances and licence fees payable by broadcasters and streaming platforms.

Fulcrum has a deep understanding of the relevant processes. We have relationships with most major distributors, sales agents and broadcasters in Australia, New Zealand and the UK, as well as experience working with streaming platforms and US and UK studios. We have a demonstrated history of being capable of leveraging this network and expertise to devise flexible, creative and efficient cashflow structures across a diverse range of projects.

As with all our services, Fulcrum will assess our ability to provide this type of finance on a project-by-project basis.

Please contact Max Dalton to discuss collaborating with Fulcrum. If you are submitting an enquiry in relation to a tax credit or other incentive and you would also like Fulcrum to consider cashflowing your distribution guarantee, international presale, sales agent advance or licence fee, please advise us of this in your enquiry.

People

The combined experience, reputation and relationships of our people allows us to provide you with the reliable and timely service you need, as well as value added assistance in structuring the finance for your project.

Whether you deal with Sharon Menzies, Max Dalton, Zach Parker or Amy Liu, our focus is always on creating a responsive, efficient and friendly experience for producers.

Zachary Parker

Zachary Parker, Counsel, Business & Legal Affairs

Assisting Sharon and Max, Zach leads the negotiation and drafting of Fulcrum’s loan and security documentation for all internally contracted projects. Zach is also responsible for instructing Fulcrum’s external lawyers, as well as reviewing and negotiating co-financier agreements.

Having worked as a paralegal and then lawyer at Simpsons Solicitors between 2017 and early 2021, Zach has experience in a wide range of legal matters across film and television, including acting for both producers and financiers. Zach brings this broad perspective to the table in assisting Fulcrum to be responsive, tailored and efficient.

Zach can also be found alongside Max at industry events, markets and conferences.

Zach gained a Bachelor of Arts in Communication and a Bachelor of Laws in 2017 from University of Technology, Sydney. During 2017, Zach was a legal intern for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation and a paralegal at Corrs Chambers Westgarth.

Sharon Menzies

Sharon Menzies, Managing Director

Sharon Menzies has led the team at Fulcrum since the company’s inception in 2008.

Sharon’s focus is on building and maintaining relationships with producers that, at their core, result in sustainable, reliable and accessible cashflow lending arrangements for film and television projects. To achieve this, Sharon calls on a myriad of capabilities and experience: an intricate knowledge of tax, investment and grant based incentive schemes for film and television across a number of jurisdictions; an in-depth understanding of production and the global film and television industry as a whole; an active involvement with key industry bodies in the New Zealand and Australian industries; and an ability to structure cashflow arrangements that satisfy both the criteria and the client.

Additionally, Sharon has a history of being heavily involved at an industry level, including her Co-Presidency of Screen Production and Development Association of New Zealand (SPADA) (2017 to present), SPADA board member (Nov 2009 – Dec 2011), board member for Women in Film and Television (NZ) (WIFT NZ) (October 2013) and later her Presidency (21 Oct 2014 to 13 October 2015) and as an assessor for Screen Australia’s Enterprise Programme (2015 and 2016), as well as her regular attendance at major international film festivals and markets.

Prior to setting up Fulcrum, Sharon had 20 years of experience in commercial and business affairs in film finance companies in the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. Her financing career started in the banking industry working for a major Australian bank structuring midmarket corporate loans.

Max Dalton

Max Dalton, Head of Business & Legal Affairs

You’ll get to know Max Dalton well – he’s the main point of contact for new business dealings with Fulcrum. He also attends most key film festival, markets and industry events in Australia and New Zealand.

An experienced lawyer, Max is the conduit and liaison between Sharon, Fulcrum’s external solicitors and producers. His focus is ensuring that the contracting for each project runs smoothly and meets client expectations.

Max currently serves on the negotiating committee representing the Screen Producers Association of Australia in the renegotiation of the Actors Feature Film Collective Agreement with the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance, as well as on the Hearts for Arts Law Committee.

Holding a Bachelor of International Studies and Law from the University of New South Wales (UNSW), Max is admitted to practise law in NSW and is registered on the High Court of Australia’s Register of Practitioners. He is also an MBA (Executive) candidate at UNSW’s Australian Graduate School of Management.

For a full work history, please see Max’s LinkedIn page.

Barry Sechos

Barry Sechos, Director

As a company director, business executive and corporate lawyer with over 30 years’ experience that spans screen production, finance, and distribution, as well as the banking and finance, funds management and not-for-profit sectors, Barry brings significant commercial expertise to the Fulcrum team.

Barry works closely with Sharon in determining Fulcrum’s strategic direction and managing its investor relationships.

Barry is also a Director and Principal of Paddington St Finance Pty Limited, a specialist structured finance company providing R&D Tax Incentive Finance and Mid-Market Corporate Loans to emerging corporations domiciled in Australia; a Director of Regeneus Limited, an Australian based regenerative medicine company listed on the Australian Securities Exchange and which focuses on using the regenerative capacities of stem cells to develop innovative cell therapies for humans and animals; and a Director of Concentrated Leaders Fund Limited, an investment company listed on the Australian Securities Exchange and which invests primarily in Australian companies within the S&P/ASX200 Accumulation Index.

Barry previously held various positions with DirectCash Payments Inc, an ATM payments processing company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange; the Aberdeen Asset Management / EquitiLink Funds Management Group, including as Director of Aberdeen Asset Management, General Counsel and Compliance Officer to EquitiLink Group and EquitiLink International Management. Barry commenced his professional career as a commercial lawyer at the law firm Allen Allen & Hemsley, specialising in banking and finance law and working in its Sydney, Singapore and London offices.

Amy Liu

Amy Liu, Accountant

Amy is Fulcrum’s accountant. Reporting to Sharon, she employs her meticulous attention in processing loan drawdowns, issuing loan statements and organising loan repayments – all in a time critical fashion. She has been employed as an accountant within the screen sector for over four years and has experience in both production accounting and finance.

Amy holds a Bachelor of Accounting from Macquarie University, a Master of Accounting and Finance from University of Technology Sydney and a CPA Certificate. Amy is fluent in English and Mandarin.

Get in touch

If your project has a draft budget, qualifying expenditure breakdown, finance plan, production schedule and project overview (including a synopsis and list of key personnel), we’d love to hear from you.

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