It’s been over a week since the Ryan Kavanaugh-led mini-studio filed for bankruptcy but turns out there are still more revelations and crocodile tears to come. One of them is that today the U.S. Trustee named NBCUniversal as an unsecured creditor in the sprawling Relativity bankruptcy case (read it here). The company is one of seven members of a committee now working on the Chapter 11 process.
Which raises the question – why?
There don’t seem to be any current projects that Relativity and NBCU were in bed together on. So was it an old debt lodged in the convoluted ownership of Relativity? A long past project with lots of loose ends from when Relativity had money in Universal’s slate back in 2008? Aftermath of a current or past investor in Kavanaugh and crew? An advertising agreement left unpaid?
Up until Friday’s notice, NBCU was never mentioned in the forest killing of filings that company has made since filing for Chapter 11 on July 30. However, those who agree to be on such an unsecured creditors committee are usually the ones with some major bucks owned to them – which must mean the Comcast-owned media giant were shorted big.
Legal Department SVP Mariano Schwed is named on the notice but NBCU isn’t talking. Neither is Relativity but we’ll undoubtedly find out what it’s all about soon enough. The next hearings on the Chapter 11 are set for August 14 and 25. And that means more paperwork and more details.
The other new members of the unsecured creditors committee are no surprise. Ad giant Carat USA, who is looking for $36.8 million from Relativity, tops the new committee members. With NBCU in second place, there is then Cinegram Corp, Technicolor, Inc., Allied Advertising Ltd Partnership, Comen VFX and Create Advertising. As far as we know, Relativity is on the hook to at least 50 unsecured creditors looking for over $73 million.
Variety first reported on NBCU being named to the committee.