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A24 Raises Significant New Investment Round, Valuing Company at $3.5B

A24 Raises Significant New Investment Round, Valuing Company at $3.5B

A24 Raises Significant New Investment Round, Valuing Company at .5B

A24, the Oscar-winning indie studio that has become an edgy brand name unto itself, is getting a big vote of confidence — and an influx of cash.

The studio announced today it has closed on an investment round led by Joshua Kushner’s Thrive Capital. The Hollywood Reporter has learned that Thrive invested $75 million into the indie studio based on a $3.25 billion pre-money valuation. A source close to A24 with knowledge of the investment notes that the company’s enterprise valuation now sits at $3.5 billion, suggesting this round of funding will net the company roughly a $250 million total investment.

As a part of the investment, Thrive founder Kushner will join the A24 board of directors.

The news of the A24’s new valuation and Thrive’s investment comes as the studio pushed into more commercial projects, with bigger budgets and A-list talent. There was a period, not too long ago, when the Hollywood rumor mill was convinced A24 was on the precipice of being sold. Depending on the week, it was to Apple or to Amazon. Then, in early 2022, the company announced it had done a round of financing instead — $225 million, at a valuation of $2.5 billion. Existing investors are said to have contributed to the most recent round, as well.

A24 has long been synonymous with a filmmaker-first approach that has earned it many fans in a contemporary Hollywood that has only grown increasingly risk-averse. Early acquisitions included Alex Garland’s Ex Machina, Harmony Korine’s Spring Breakers and Barry Jenkin’s Moonlight, the latter of which netted A24 its first Oscar-winning title.

As it became known for breaking new directing talent like Ari Aster (Midsommar and Hereditary) and Robert Eggers (The Witch, The Lighthouse), A24 pushed more into production with films like Zola, the X films, and the best picture winning Everything Everywhere All at Once. On the television front, A24 found success producing HBO hit Euphoria (albeit A24 only takes a fee on the production) and has expanded its slate to include Netflix Emmy winner Beef and beloved Showtime series The Curse.

All of this led to the studio’s current “cool kid” status, bolstered by its ubiquitous merch that sees the A24 logo emblazoned on sweatshirts and hats worn by moviegoers. A24 has become a household name with intentionality, with the studio having long sold coffee table books, candles, and other movie-inspired paraphernalia. (Earlier this year, A24 struck a deal with London-based independent publisher Mack that will see the A24 books sold in stores, a step up from its direct-to-consumer model.)

As for the box office, A24 isn’t known for massive windfalls. The movies that it traditionally releases — passion projects from first-time and auteur filmmakers, festival acquisitions, and the occasional genre hit — have tight margins. While some films proved successful, there have been misses (recently, Aster’s Beau Is Afraid) and still other, smaller titles get little to no theatrical play at all.

Still, by 2022, when the studio raised its first massive round of funding since its founding, it became clear that A24 was primed for growth.

As of late, A24 executives have been asking around for the “A24 version” of commercial titles that range from John Wick to Suits, according to several sources. “What’s an A24 version of The Hills or Laguna Beach, which I truly loved just from an audience perspective? We could crush something like that,” A24 TV head Ravi Nandan told Bloomberg earlier this year.

The asks have left some in the industry, including A24’s longtime partners, confused, unsure what to make of the push into more commercial work for a company that built its brand on out-of-the-box filmmaking.    

At the box office, A24 has found commercial success with genre films such as Aster’s and the horror feature Talk to Me, which was acquired out of the 2023 Sundance Film Festival and fast-tracked for a sequel by the studio. But a push into an era of making more content has not been without bumps. The A24-produced HBO series The Idol was plagued with production issues, while a third season of Euphoria has remained stubbornly out of reach.  

The studio recently released its most ambitious project to date with Alex Garland’s actioner Civil War. The studio placed the budget at $50 million but several sources have pegged the budget closer to $70 million. The film grossed $68 million at the domestic box office to date and over $120 million internationally. (By comparison, Everything Everywhere grossed over $70 million domestically and was produced for roughly $14 million budget.)

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The studio’s upcoming slate includes the Benny Safdie and Dwayne Johnson MMA biopic The Smashing Machine, the Adam Wingard action-thriller Onslaught, and a project that will pair the studio with Steven Spielberg’s Amblin Entertainment.

Outside of investments like Thrive’s, A24 has bolstered its production efforts with moneyed output deals, including the one signed at the end of 2023 that will see A24 theatrical movies iar exclusively on HBO and stream only on Max. Other deals include an exclusive airline distribution deal with Anuvu and Happinet Phantom Studios covering the distribution in Japan.

Thrive was launched by Kushner in 2009 to invest primarily in Internet, software, and tech companies. Its investments have included Instagram, Spotify, Slack, Patreon, Stripe and Fanatics, and it currently has about $14 billion in assets under management. In 2022, after he left but before he returned to the company as CEO, Disney’s Bob Iger joined the firm as a partner. A few months later, after he returned to Disney, Iger acquired a stake in Thrive — along with other partners — that was previously owned by Goldman Sachs.

Kushner is the son of real estate developer Charles Kushner and the younger brother of former Trump White House adviser Jared Kushner. He is also married to model and entrepreneur Karlie Kloss. 

Said A24 in a statement about today’s news: “We’re thrilled to be working with Thrive Capital whose unique expertise will be invaluable in our growth. With Thrive, alongside our existing partners, we look forward to growing our support of groundbreaking storytellers and helping their voices reach audiences around the world.”

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