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Pandora of things: acquisition, distribution, financing.

"We are still called a French company, even though most of our business is conducted outside of France." Based in Paris, Christian Bourguignon, president of Pandora is proud of his diverse company, which includes its U.S. subsidiary, Pandora International Entertainment. Sales are handled in both the Los Angeles and New York offices.

Luxembourg is the location for some of Pandora's other activities: Pandora Investment, which acquires the audiovisual rights to international TV programming; Pandora Cinema, the group's newly created theatrical arm, obtains the funding and sales of major theatrical pictures; and Pandora Expansion, a holding company which participates in production companies.

We are doing the best we can in this economy, and are optimistic about the future," said Bourguignon, who admitted that the tumultous market had made things "difficult." But unlike many producers, Bourguignon does not point a finger at the broadcasters for today's financial problems. "They are all trying to get the maximum quality for their dollars." Instead, Bourguignon feels the market might recoup if production costs were reduced. "If all shoes cost $1000, and your customers can only pay $100, you must learn to adapt yourself to the client. It is always a two-way street."

Bourguignon said that Pandora is selling more to the Germans than ever before. However, he predicted that within one year, the trend will slow down, "when their needs are served. Although the Germans need a large amount of product right now, it is better to think about your needs on a long term basis."

Bourguignon also placed emphasis on mature markets like France, Italy and Spain, predicting that the American share of market will become more complicated and will soon diminish. "These markets now have enough money to produce more national product, and will have less and less need to broadcast U.S. programming." However, the downside of this is that national product does not travel well." Bourguignon doesn't have an interest in becoming a producer, since he finds that those who do cross over to that area have financial difficulties. "We are making a profit as distributors-why spoil that?"

Pandora is financing and distributing 26 half-hour episodes of Hollywood Babylon series for the U.S. and international market at MIP-TV.
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Publication:Video Age International
Article Type:Company Profile
Date:Apr 1, 1992
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